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On Wednesday, June 28, Dr. Chantalle Verna inaugurates the 20th Annual Haitian Summer Institute (HSI) Lecture Series with a talk on the research and history behind her recent publication "Haiti and the Uses of America." The presentation is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception to celebrate the HSI's 20th Anniversary. Join us! For details please click on the title above.

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LACC affiliated faculty member Dr. Melissa Baralt and team won the national "Bridging the Word Gap Challenge" which awards $75k for a project that teaches parents how to maximize their babies' language development. By age 3, children from low-income families hear 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers. Baralt's app was created to reduce the word gap and promote bilingualism among Hispanic babies. It was the only entry targeting a minority population. Click on the title for info.

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JGI and LACC announce the launch of a new series of reports examining the cultures of militaries in Latin America and the Caribbean. Authored by top scholars, the ongoing military culture series examines internal and external factors that shape contemporary institutional identities. Click on the title above to access reports on Cuba, Honduras, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Argentina. Forthcoming reports examine the militaries of Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Guatemala and Peru.

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Juan Carlos Gomez is a law professor and director of the Carlos A. Costa Immigration and Human Rights Clinic at FIU. With decades of experience defending immigrants, Gomez recently made front page news as part of a group denouncing the increased number of scams targeting immigrants. Fearful of increased deportations under the Trump administration, undocumented immigrants turn their dollars and their destinies over to sometimes unscrupulous "lawyers" who promise work permits...and then disappear.

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On May 23 FIU experts will report on The New Face of Central American Gangs: MS-13 and the Gang Phenomenon in El Salvador at FIU-DC. LACC Research Director Jose Miguel Cruz and JGI Research Scientist Jonathan Rosen present results of their survey of nearly 1,200 youth gang members and former members. FIU's Pres. Rosenberg will introduce the panel, joined by moderator Frank Mora, and Cynthia Arnson (Woodrow Wilson Center) and Desmond Arias (George Mason University) will act as discussants.

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Professor Nick Andre and FIU alumna Nyya Toussaint have created the first Haitian Creole course for the language-learning platform, Duolingo. The platform, also accessible via app, includes a language proficiency assessment. This Haitian Creole course was developed with the support of Toussaint’s US Department of Education FLAS Fellowship award. It will soon be available in all of Duolingo’s platforms free of charge. Click on title to read more.

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Jorge Esquirol, FIU Law professor and LACC affiliated faculty member, teaches, publishes and lectures in English, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian. Over the past year alone, he has lectured in the US, Germany, Colombia, Thailand, Brazil, Uruguay, Italy and South Africa. Esquirol's focus is broad, earning him renown for his ability to present comparative scenarios for each audience. Specialties? International, comparative and commercial law. Congratulations to a LACC member making global impact!

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Citing LACC's support of K-12 Portuguese language and culture programs at FIU and in Miami Dade County Public Schools, on Saturday, May 6th, the American Organization of Teachers of Portuguese (AOTP) Florida Chapter presented the 2017 award to LACC Director Frank Mora. The award is in recognition of "the passion and commitment for education, inclusiveness and diversity."

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On April 25, Dr. Jean Rahier inaugurated a collection of his work in a ceremony at the Universidad Andina Simon Bolivar, Quito. The material is part of his research carried out in Afro-Ecuadorian communities between 1984 and 2003 on festivals, cultural practices and issues related to racism and discrimination. The new collection is the major repository of Afrodescendants in the Andean region. The donation took place within the framework of the MOU signed between FIU and the UASB in 2015.

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Dr. Bianca Premo announced the first phase of FIU's History Dept. project that visualizes via online mapping the multiple power structures people navigated during colonial times. The overlapping jurisdictions of church, crown, guild, and villages made for a life far more complex than perceived by traditional observation of a one-dimensional map of a Spanish viceroyalty. The project is spearheaded by PhD candidates, post-docs and faculty from the History Department.

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