Roger Thayer Stone Center For Latin American Studies

Tulane University

Nora Murphy, '12

Legal/Administrative Assistant, Bracewell & Giuliani LLP, Washington, DC

After graduating from Tulane with a degree in Latin American Studies and Portuguese, Nora moved home to Arlington, VA to look for a job in Washington, DC. Prior to graduating, she had spent a semester interning at the New Orleans Public Defends Office (OPD) where she worked almost exclusively as a Spanish/English translator and interpreter for the inmates and attorneys. This experience inspired her to apply for law jobs, with the possibility of one day attending law school. She now works as a legal/administrative assistant to a Brazilian attorney and partner at Bracewell & Giuliani LLP.

Nora’s time at Tulane gave her crucial skills and knowledge…

Why did you choose Latin American Studies?
I chose to major in Latin American Studies because I grew up speaking Spanish and visiting Spanish speaking countries. I loved the culture and the people, and wanted to have a more in-depth understanding of the region. Tulane has a very strong Latin American studies program and I wanted to take advantage of the resources available to me (great professors, study abroad opportunities and the Latin American Studies Library).

How has your background in LAST helped you since graduation?
Since graduation my degree in Latin American studies has helped me mostly in securing a job. What stood out on my résumé to my current employer was my first-hand experience in many of the countries they do business with and my language skills. Since I spent my junior year abroad in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil I was very interested in maintaining my ties with Brazil. I interviewed (in Portuguese) and got the job as a legal/administrative assistant to a Brazilian attorney and partner at Bracewell & Giuliani LLP. I work primarily in the fields of international trade and finance, business regulatory, and energy. I was hired largely due to my fluency in Portuguese and Spanish. He needed an assistant that would be able to communicate effectively with his international clients. The majority of our clients are from Brazil, Portugal, Spain, Mexico, Peru, Paraguay, and the Dominican Republic. In my mind, knowing a second language like Spanish or Portuguese will always make it a bit easier to get a job. It sets you apart from other students with BA’s and BS’s.

Recently, I was also hired as a part-time specialist at the Apple Store. I have a lot of experience in customer service and have always wanted to work at the apple store. Apple is opening it’s first store in Latin America and Brazil this year in Rio de Janeiro. Since I would love to live in Rio, I am planning to work at the Arlington location for the next year until I am able to transfer to the Rio de Janeiro location. I am hoping that my language skills and experience in Brazil will allow me to successfully work and live in Rio!

In hindsight, what would you have done different as a LAST major?
I don’t think I would’ve done much differently. The one thing I regret is not participating in the Binghamton conference thesis presentation. I think it would’ve been a great experience to present my work.

Any words of wisdom for LAST undergraduates?
Work hard on your thesis/and or papers because often times future employers will ask for writing samples. If you are already happy with what you’ve written it will save you a lot of time and effort in the future. Pay attention in the LAST senior seminar class- I got a lot out of it! Lastly, don’t worry too much about post-grad life, you are more prepared than you think! Also, enjoy college while you still can ;)

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Ancient Civilizations K-16 Series for Social Studies Educators

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Ancient Civilizations
K-16 Educator Workshop Series
Spring 2020

For educators of grade levels: K-12

Tulane University’s Middle American Research Institute (MARI), Stone Center for Latin American Studies (SCLAS), S.S. NOLA, and AfterCLASS will host a professional development workshop series open to all K-16 school professionals. These workshops will challenge educators to learn about the unexpected impact and connections of Ancient civilizations from Central America to the Gulf South. In particular, the workshops will foster a deeper comprehension of how to incorporate art, language and food across the disciplines. Participants will learn unique ways to incorporate the Tunica, Maya and Aztec cultures into the classroom in a variety of subjects. Registration for each workshop is $5 and includes light snacks, teaching resources, and a certificate of completion.

The workshop series will prepare teachers:

  • To utilize digital humanities resources in the classroom;
  • To design culturally appropriate primary and secondary research projects;
  • To teach about Pre-Columbian and ancient civilizations, language, geography and foods;
  • To encourage student self-determination through meaningful and relevant cultural projects.

Saturday, January 25, 2020
9:00 am – 12:00 pm
The Tunica of the Lower Mississippi River Valley
Middle American Research Institute – Seminar Room
6823 St. Charles Avenue
This workshop will introduce participants with little or no prior knowledge to ancient Tunica history, art, and language, with special focus on the role of food and native foods of this region. Participants will explore the physical, cultural and linguistic characteristics of the region. Representatives of the Tunica community will introduce their language and culture and the work they do to preserve their language.

Friday, March 6, 2020
4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Understanding Maya Fare: Beyond Tamales and Cacao
AfterCLASS – Taylor Education Center
612 Andrew Higgins Blvd. #4003
In collaboration with the Annual Tulane Maya Symposium, this workshop focuses on foods of the Maya. Participants will explore the foods of the Maya focusing on the role of food over time. Join us as we hear from chocolate specialists and our Kaqchikel language scholar will discuss the importance of corn. REGISTER HERE.

Thursday, April 29, 2020
7:00 – 8:30 PM
Teaching Aztec History through Art
Participants in this workshop will explore the art and culture of the Aztec community. This workshop has moved online and will consist of a 60 minute online webinar that includes an introduction to teaching Aztec history, a discussion of different art objects that the Aztecs created which reveal insights into their history, and a discussion of new online resources to incorporate into your teaching.

The webinar is free an open to educators of all grade levels. In order to access the session, please register here.

Global Read Webinar Series 2020

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Diverse Books for the K-12 Classroom
February – June 2020 – All webinars are 6 PM CST
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Once a month, the World Area Book Awards (Américas Award, Africana Book Award, Freeman Book Award, Middle East Book Award, and the South Asia Book Award) will sponsor a 60-minute webinar on a book recognized by one of the awards. Each webinar features a presentation by an award-winning author with discussion on how to incorporate multicultural literature into the classroom. Please read along with us this spring as we explore the world through these award-winning books. We encourage all readers to join in on the conversations each month and ask the author your own questions live.

Be sure to join the conversation with our webinar hashtag #2020ReadingAcrossCultures. Visit www.internationalizingsocialstudies.blog for more information and to register for free.

  • AFRICAFEBRUARY 26, 2020 Africana Book Award
    Grandpa Cacao, A Tale of Chocolate from Farm to Family by Elizabeth Zunon
  • MIDDLE EASTMARCH 18, 2020 Middle East Book Award
    Darius the Great is Not OKAY by Adib Khorram
  • SOUTH ASIAAPRIL 14, 2020 – South Asia Book Award
    The Secret Kingdom: Nek Chand, a Changing India, and a Hidden World of Art by Barb Rosenstock
  • LATIN AMERICAMAY 11, 2020 – Américas Award
    Auntie Luce‘€™s Talking Paintings by Francie Latour
  • ASIAJUNE 23, 2020 – Freeman Book Award
    Girl of the Southern Sea by Michelle Kadarusman

All sessions are free and open to the public. Register by visiting internationalizingsocialstudies.org. Sponsored by the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs, the South Asia National Outreach Consortium, the Middle East Outreach Council, the African Studies Outreach Council, and The National Consortium for Teaching about Asia.

Online Summer Book Group for K-12 Educators

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For pre-service, early career and veteran teachers who love reading and learning through literature who want to explore award-winning books for the middle and early high school classrooms. Join us as we read four books that explore stories of coming-of-age from multiple perspectives. Participants will receive a copy of each book and participate in an open discussion with other K-12 educators. We will launch the book group with The Other Half of Happy. The group will meet online and explore the real story behind this award-winning book with the author Rebecca Balrcárcel. Join us this summer as we discover new stories and books for your classroom.

Register here for $15 (includes all 4 books).

All online Zoom meetings are at 7:00 PM CST.

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Sponsored by the Stone Center for Latin American Studies and AfterCLASS at Tulane University. For more information, please email crcrts@tulane.edu.