UCONN and UPR Debut Livestreaming Colloquium Series

Contributed by Samuel Martínez

UConn’s El Instituto and the University of Puerto Rico Río Piedras’ Centro de Recursos de Investigación y Aprendizaje Subgraduados (CRiiAS) and the UPR’s Archivo de Ciencias Sociales are teaming up during the 2021-22 academic year for a new series of on-line livestreaming talks. According to the co-organizers, CRiiAS Director Carmen Maldonado-Vlaar and the Archivo’s Director Jorge Giovanetti-Torres, the aim of the series is to feature the work of some of the outstanding Puerto Rican studies faculty and students in both universities, and to familiarize students with the many opportunities on the island and in the mainland for professional development and research and study on Puerto Rican themes.

The emphasis of the series during Fall 2021 has been on familiarizing UPR undergraduates with Puerto Rican studies at UConn.

2021-09-13-Oquendo UCONN Autodeterminacion EventThe first talk in the series, titled “Autodeterminación el el contexto de la situación de la isla,” was presented on 13 September 2021, by Angel Oquendo, George J. and Helen M. England Professor at the UConn School of Law. Oquendo gave emphasis to the need for new narratives to emerge about Puerto Rico’s political status if needed creative thinking is to occur about the present situation of crisis and how the island can replace the outmoded Estado Libre Asociado with a new model for its relationship with the United States and the world.

The second event was a presentation on 22 September 2021 of the book Colonial Migrants at the Heart of2021-09-17-Promoción Presentación del libro Dr. Ismael García Empire: Puerto Rican Workers on US Farms, by UConn Anthropology PhD and Professor of Anthropology at CUNY Staten Island, Ismael García-Colón. García-Colón’s talk on the challenges involved in researching and theorizing this topic was preceded by a brilliant appreciation of the book by UPR Professor Emeritus Silvia Alvarez-Curbelo.

The third event of the series, 13 October 2021, was “Cómo lograr exitosamente la admisión a programas graduados en universidades de Estados Unidos.” In it, Master’s program graduates of El Instituto, who started out as undergraduates at la UPR and are now doing doctoral research at UConn and other universities, shared their experiences in grad school and gave tips for undergraduate students about how to find the right graduate program for them. The panelists were Katherine Pérez Quiñones, Stephanie Mercado Irizarry, Lauren Pérez Bonilla, and Ashley Ortiz-Chico, all graduates of both UConn-El Instituto and la UPR.

Further events in the series will be advertised through our events distribution list, on El Instituto’s events calendar, and on Facebook.