CLAS@Pitt NEWSLETTER-October 1, 2020

CLAS@Pitt NEWSLETTER-October 1, 2020

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Our second screening in the CLAS Film Series, Mapa de Sueños Latinoamericanos, will show today, October 1 at 6 pm (EST). We are excited to have Martín Weber, its Writer and Director, join us for a discussion of the film immediately after.
For next week, we highlight a fortunate coincidence that we feel is auspicious: Dr. Mitch Seligson, former Director of the Center for Latin American Studies, LAPOP's founder and senior advisor, was awarded with the WAPOR's Helen Dinerman Award. This award honors particularly significant contributions to survey research methodology. 
On Tuesday, October 6, at 3:30 pm EDT, CLAS will host the Presentation of FRANCISCO MEJÍA MEJÍA: la autobiografía de un campesino costarricense, 1923-1981, edited by Mitch Seligson and Susan Berk Seligson. The Pitt Department of History’s Lara Putnam will join them for the event. We hope that you take the opportunity to re-connect with an old friend and ally, and celebrate the publication.
On Wednesday, September 30, the CLAS team had a great time cooking traditional “Rice and…” dishes, together and apart. If you missed the event, you may follow this link to find the recording, as well as records of other recent and not-so-recent CLAS events.
Even as time goes by and issues and news cycles dilute our attention and focus, please consider this a reminder about the relevance and importance of thinking harder about, and moving towards, a more equitable and just society. The CLAS Newsletter contains links to University resources to help us reflect about racial and ethnic disparities in constructive ways.

We would also like to encourage you to take advantage of the recently extended national Census deadline to make sure you are counted. This is a crucial activity that has important financial, democratic representation and civic life repercussions for the next ten years. Even if you have already completed your Census forms, please be sure to let others know about the new deadline.


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Reminder! If you would like to add a CLAS sponsored event to your Outlook or Google calendar(s), visit: and search by event or date.

Questions? Contact



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CLAS Events
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Wednesday, October 14, 2020

6:00 p.m.

For more information about the event and to register, visit:

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CLAS Cinema Series

For more information about the films, visit:

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Stay Tuned!

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CLAS Faculty, Alumni, Staff News & Information
For more information about LAGOS, visit:

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CLAS Faculty News:

New publication by Dr. Barry Ames (CLAS Faculty) and Dr. Lucio Reno (CLAS Alumni)

Persuasive Peers: Social Communication and Voting in Latin America
(Andy Baker, Barry Ames and Lucio Renno)

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CLAS Student Information and Opportunities
For undergraduate and graduate students:

Meet your Academic Advisor, Luis Bravo!

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 University of Pittsburgh

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University of Pittsburgh Events, References

and Resources


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Pitt Events
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To register:  
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Pitt Events, References and Resources
University of Pittsburgh: COVID-19 Medical Response Office

As you prepare to make your way to campus, we’ve created the Daily COVID-19 Health Check app, a quick and convenient way for you to monitor your health during your shelter-in-place period. This daily health check is required for all students preparing to travel to campus. It is an essential part of how we work together to keep you and other members of our community safe.

Students living in University housing are required to begin using the app on the first day of your shelter-in-place at home, and continue to use it throughout your travel to campus and pod week. Students living off campus must use the app every day during your 14-day shelter-in-place. If you begin experiencing COVID-19 symptoms during this period, please follow the guidance on the app and contact your campus’s student health service. 

COVID-19 Health Check
Using the app is easy. Use a web browser to visit and look for the thermometer icon.

Simply log in using your Pitt credentials and answer two questions about how you are feeling and whether you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. If you encounter technical difficulties with the app, please submit a help ticket to the Technology Help Desk. 

Completing your daily health check may be required for access to campus facilities, so don’t forget to start using it on the first day of your shelter-in-place period. As always, remember to wear a face covering when you are around people, practice social distancing where appropriate and wash your hands frequently.

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Racial and Ethnic Equity--Resources

For some time now, Pitt has been working hard to respond to amplify resources related to racial and ethnic disparities. This Summer of 2020, additional efforts and resources were devoted following events that made the urgency of related issues clearer to people around the world. It is then relevant to highlight some useful links to enhance understanding and contribute to an increasingly equitable and prosperous world for everyone.

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The Student Emergency Assistance Fund is a joint venture led by the Office of the Provost, Office of Philanthropic & Alumni Engagement, Student Government Board, the Graduate & Professional Student Government, and the Division of Student Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh. The health and safety of our Pitt community, particularly our students, is paramount. The fund, to be administered at the direction of the Provost, will be used to provide financial support for degree-seeking students of the University of Pittsburgh with unanticipated and insurmountable expenses related to emergency situations that may result in students facing financial hardship. Undergraduate, graduate, and professional students may apply for funds when they experience a financial barrier based on an emergency situation, and when they have exhausted all other available resources.

Expenses Covered by the Fund

Examples of emergency expenses to be considered include, but are not limited to:

  • Medical necessities
  • Food insecurity
  • Unexpected transportation and travel expenses
  • Overdue utility bills reaching a turn-off notice
  • Homelessness, sudden loss of housing, or imminent eviction
  • Loss of childcare
  • Academic supplies and technology repair or support
  • Up to $600 may be requested

Expenses Not Covered by the Fund

  • Tuition, fees, health insurance, and study abroad costs
  • Non-essential personal bills such as: current utility, credit card, cable, cell phone, etc.
  • Parking tickets, library fines, or other expenses mistakenly incurred
  • Funds for the replacement of lost or stolen items
  • Rent payments are not covered by the fund unless a one-time payment will delay or halt an eviction.

Hold on Eviction

Students who live off-campus should be aware of their Tenants’ Rights. In addition, the Attorney General of Pennsylvania has recently issued an order that evictions cannot take place at this time. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ordered courts closed to eviction proceedings due to the COVID-19 state of emergency. The Court’s order is applicable to all Pennsylvania property owners, managers, landlords, as well as mortgage brokers and lenders.

Eligibility Requirements

Any Pitt student may apply for emergency funds. Each applicant must meet the following criteria:

  • Demonstrate financial hardship
  • Experience an emergency, accident, illness, or other unforeseen event among the “covered” examples above
  • Be currently enrolled as a full-time or part-time, degree-seeking student

Applicants must complete all questions in full and submit a justification and supporting documentation as the situation allows. Examples of supporting documentation include but are not limited to:

  • Eviction notice
  • Utility bills indicating shut-off notice
  • Medical bills

Students with non-emergent financial hardships that do not qualify for the Student Emergency Assistance Fund, including student account balances, are encouraged to contact the Office of Financial Aid directly to discuss their situation and talk about possible aid options.

Application Process

Students in need of emergency financial assistance are encouraged to submit the application. Questions may be directed to
Completed applications are reviewed by members of the Student Emergency Assistance Fund Advisory Committee that includes representatives from Student Affairs and the Office of Financial Aid. A member of the committee will respond to emergency application submissions within 72 hours or three business days.
The maximum emergency aid allocation to a student will be $600. Payment will be distributed as soon as possible consistent with University policies and procedures. Each application is carefully reviewed to ensure all other financial aid resources are maximized first.
Students should set up direct deposit in PittPAY

How Do I Sign Up for Direct Deposit (eRefunds)?

  • Log onto PittPAY from the Student PittPay Login at
  • Select the eRefund tab.
  • Enter your bank routing and account information
  • Once you save the information, you will receive a confirmation email from PittPAY.
  • Students should be aware that emergency funding may create a taxable event that could require reporting to the IRS by the recipient.

    Submit the application here

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    Community Support


    Chancellor Patrick Gallagher called upon the University to acknowledge our role in the response during this time of great challenge… Join us in Pitt’s Pandemic Service Initiative: expanding staff, faculty, and student service; contributing to drives and collections; and forging innovative partnerships. We are rolling up our sleeves.


    As part of the Pitt Pandemic Service Initiative, faculty, staff, and students are coming together to meet critical community needs. You can make a difference with even just a small amount of time. Priority needs identified by community partners include care and connection calls and IT support.

    Student Service

    Faculty/Staff Service 

    Drives and Collections

    We’re committed to being a University of the community. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Pitt students, faculty, and staff are volunteering to provide technology support, well-checks, and a host of other forms of support. 

    For community members, this means access to resources and information. 



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    The Eduardo Lozano Latin American  Collection and Hillman Library 
     For more information, visit:
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    Updates from Hillman Library


    Currently, all ULS libraries are closed, but if you have questions, please contact Ask Us or check the Library Response & Resources page for ways the library can still help!

    Nearly 50% of our print book collection is now available online until the end of summer!

     Full-text versions of all books offered through HathiTrust that are also in the ULS collections are available online to Pitt faculty, students, and staff temporarily through the summer. Simply search the catalog and look for the “HathiTrust” link. 

    No-Contact Pickup of Print Materials! 

    Starting June 24, Pitt faculty, staff, and students can request print materials that are not available via HathiTrust for no-contact pickup.  

    If you find an item in the catalog that has a “Request This Item” button enabled, please choose the “Request Whole Book” option and indicate your preferred pick-up location. Note that Owen Library at Pitt Johnstown will not be pick-up location until July 6. You may select up to 15 items at a time. You will be contacted via email with instructions for when and how to retrieve your items. Beginning on July 6 you will also be able to request print items via ILL for no-contact pickup. Please Ask Us if you have any questions. Not able to pick up your items? Starting July 6, we will mail them to you! This service is available for US addresses only.  This service is available for ULS-owned items shipped to US addresses only.

    No Need to Renew Checked Out Items 

    As a reminder, you do not need to renew or return your materials to the library at this time. All library materials (including E-ZBorrow and Interlibrary Loans) are now due Sept. 30, 2020. See our FAQ further down this page for information about returning your materials.  

    A New PittCat Library Catalog is Coming in July 2020! 

    Visit for more information and be sure to check out this introductory video

    Archives and Special Collections Reading Room at Thomas Boulevard to Open 

    As of June 22, the Archives and Special Collections Reading Room at Thomas Boulevard is now open by appointment only. Appointments are for Pitt affiliates only and require at least 48 hours advanced notice. The number of patrons and staff will be limited to maintain social distancing. Please note that all patrons must wear a self-provided mask and will be supplied with gloves. As part of the University of Pittsburgh's efforts to ensure a safe and healthy environment for all employees and visitors on campus, a self-attestation of symptoms must be completed for every day an individual comes to the campus for any reason and for any length of time. Contact us to request an appointment. One of our archivists will follow-up with you to schedule your appointment. 

    Library Access 

    At this time, ULS libraries remain closed and are expected to reopen to the Pitt community in early August. Please note that many vendors and other providers have opened emergency access to their full-text online resources. Please see our Online Research, Teaching, and Learning @ Pitt: Resources and Support from the ULS guide for what is currently available beyond our subscriptions. ​​​

    Remote Access to Library Resources

    Support for Online Teaching


    The new "PittCat”, which will be shared with the Health Sciences and Law Library systems, offers powerful, intuitive search, unique tools for the discovery of content and ideas, and streamlined ways to get the material you need, when you need it, in formats that are right for you. PittCat.pdf

    For more information about Read Green, please visit

    New ULS Journal Publications!

    The International Journal of Medical Students began publishing a Forthcoming issue of in-press articles after they have undergone peer review and have been accepted but prior to the formal production process. Four new articles were added last week.

    Dentistry 3000, which publishes articles on a rolling basis as they are ready, published Comparative evaluation of retentive strength of polyvinyl siloxane impression materials to custom tray using different tray adhesives: An In Vitro study on May 4th.

    The Bolivian Studies Journal published Volume 25, 2019 on May 11th.

    The Dialogic Pedagogy Journal, which publishes articles on a rolling basis as they are ready, published Moving from collaboration to critical dialogue in action in education on May 11th.

    If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact the ULS Director,

    Kornelia Tancheva at

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    In the midst of the challenges of the present and the uncertainties of the future, the Bolivian Studies Journal / Revista de Estudios Bolivianos published at the University of Pittsburgh has just made available in an open-access format its latest issue: Vol. 25, 2019.

    A Festschrift in honor of Xavier Albó, the volume has been compiled by Núria Vilanova, former Chair of the LASA-Bolivia section, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, and Associate Professor of World Languages and Cultures at American University.

    We invite you to review its contents by accessing the corresponding website:
    Thanks for your continuing interest in our work.

    Elizabeth Monasterios - Martha E. Mantilla
    Bolivian Studies Journal/Revista de Estudios Bolivianos

    En medio de los desafíos del presente y las incertidumbres del futuro, la Revista de Estudios Bolivianos / Bolivian Studies Journal, publicada en la Universidad de Pittsburgh, acaba de lanzar en formato de acceso abierto su último número:
    vol. 25, 2019.

    Dedicado al trabajo de Xavier Albó, la coordinación de este volumen estuvo a cargo de Núria Vilanova, ex presidenta de la sección LASA-Bolivia, Dean for Academic Affairs y Associate Professor of World Languages and Cultures en American University.

    Los invitamos a revisar los contenidos de este nuevo número, disponibles en el sitio:

    Gracias por su continuo interés en nuestro trabajo.

    Elizabeth Monasterios -  Martha E. Mantilla
    Bolivian Studies Journal/Revista de Estudios Bolivianos

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    CLAS Community Engagement 

    CLAS' community engagement programs play a pivotal role in sharing information and expertise on Latin America to educators both at the college/university level and kindergarten through secondary (K-12) level, the professional community, and general public as part of its Educational Public Service (Outreach) mission.

    Community Engagement programs are offered throughout the academic year. These include but are not limited to: professional development workshops, study abroad opportunities, faculty development seminars, summer research fellowships, curriculum development projects, school visit program, lecture and film series, resource lending library, list of Latin American Organizations in Pittsburgh, and newsletters, including CLASicos and a weekly newsletter.

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    International Outreach at the University of Pittsburgh
    University Center for International Studies (UCIS) Engagement 
    UCIS Engagement Website:

    UCIS Monthly Newsletter:

    To request a club or classroom visit:

    To share their needs and feedback about UCIS engagement,

    we are encouraging educators to take our Fall survey:

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    Pittsburgh Events, Resources for Families,

    Individuals and


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    Community Events (not sponsored by CLAS/UCIS or Pitt)
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    Trio Nova Latin Music  

    Join Refucilo Winery on the North Shore for an outdoor musical

    performance by Trio Nova. Reservations are required.

    Please refer to the flyer below for details.

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    With Open Heart and Open Arms: LGBTQ Cubans and the LGBTQ Community's Response to the Mariel Boatlift in 1980 Exhibit


    Our new traveling exhibit, With Open Heart and Open Arms: LGBTQ Cubans and the LGBTQ Community's Response to the Mariel Boatlift in 1980, is now on display at the Historic Harrisburg Resource Center, 1230 N. 3rd Street, Harrisburg. It is on exhibit through September 25 and will be open during Harrisburg's Gallery Walk on the 13th and Third in the Burg on the 18th. It has 12 panels of text, photos and graphics and 5 video units showing clips of interviews. This is a collaborative project of the PA LGBT History Network.

    You can also see it online here:
    Our web page about the exhibit:


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    Resources for Families, and Individuals

    We all must do one simple thing to stop the spread of COVID-19: Wear a mask, Pennsylvania.

    In Pennsylvania, masks are mandatory in businesses and all public spaces.

    More information:

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    From the Mayor's Office:

    While the Governor has extended protections from foreclosure or eviction, eligible residents of Pittsburgh & Allegheny County should be aware they can apply for rental assistance if needed.

    Learn more about the programs from our Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh & County CARES:

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    Join the All for All Coalition!
    The All for All Coalition is an action-oriented collaborative network that aims to advance immigrant inclusion to create a welcoming region for all. The coalition’s action framework is anchored in the ongoing implementation of the Immigrant Community Blueprint: Helping Immigrants Thrive in Allegheny County and designed to adapt to new and unanticipated challenges shared by the group. The coalition will also work in affiliation with Welcoming Pittsburgh, ensuring that progress on the Community Blueprint is complementary to the city’s Welcoming Pittsburgh Plan. The All for All Coalition will streamline action through collaboration between members and involvement of new partners. The Global Switchboard powers the All for All Coalition and will work with coalition members to establish approaches to implementing the blueprint with values based in human rights, human dignity and anti-racism.

    This application is for people and organizations that contribute to the goals of the Immigrant Community Blueprint, it will take less than 10 minutes to complete.

    Please email if you have any questions.

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    Welcoming Pittsburgh Secures $500,000 Grant for COVID-19
    Cash Assistance Program to Serve Vulnerable Immigrant Communities

    The Mayor’s Office of Equity's Welcoming Pittsburgh initiative has secured a $500,000 grant from Open Society Foundations for the COVID-19 Cash Assistance Program. The program will be run by local community organizations that serve immigrant and refugee communities who will disburse funding to residents who did not receive a federal stimulus payment.  

    Money from the grant will go to Welcoming Pittsburgh's local community partners to distribute directly to individuals and families in the communities they serve through an application process. Assisting in the creation of this fund were Acculturation for Justice, Access and Peace Outreach, Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, Casa San Jose, Jewish Family & Community Services, and Union of African Communities. These community organizations may have additional services or programs available for those who need other kinds of support.  

    Those interested in the program should contact for more information about applying or assistance with language access. Funds will be disbursed over the next several weeks on a first-come, first serve basis. No interviews are necessary to receive payment.  


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    Resources for Small Businesses
    Small Business Resources
    COVID-19 Resource Pages


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    Census Information
    October 5, 2020
    (see below for more information)*

    For every person in the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County that is not counted, we lose about $2,000 a year in federal funding for critical services like transportation, schools, hospitals, roads and other community improvements. The recent announcement by the federal government that the census deadline has been moved up means that we must get our neighbors to complete Census 2020 by October 5, 20202 (but is being contested). *

    Respond to the 2020 Census here!

    County Executive Rich Fitzgerald and Mayor William Peduto issued information for how our communities can be impacted if our undercounted communities are not counted and what we can do to help. Read the full release here

    A decision regarding when the census count ends remains in the Courts. The Trump administration ordered the count to end on September 30, a decision which was challenged in Court. Last week, a preliminary injunction was granted requiring the Census Bureau to continue the count until the original deadline of October 31. That order has been appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Yesterday, the Census Bureau announced that operations would end on October 5, which is also being contested. 

    Here is where we stand in the region. 

    City of Pittsburgh: 62.7

    Allegheny County: 71.6

    Pennsylvania (this includes enumeration numbers): 98.4

    Read more about the extended timeline below. 

    From Associated Press

    From NPR  

    From the Census Bureau  

    From National Urban League 

    COVID-19 & the 2020 Census
    • The 2020 Census is underway and the most important and safe thing you can do is respond online, by phone, or by mail. It has never been easier to respond to the 2020 Census.
    • Responding now will minimize the need for the Census Bureau to send census takers out into communities to follow up with households.

    Take the Pledge

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    Latin American and Caribbean Cuisine
    Latin American and Caribbean Cuisine

    (Delivery, Takeout and/or Gift Certificates)

    We are creating a list of local Latin American and Caribbean cuisine offerings to support and promote your business. Please complete the included survey to help us identify you and find out what services you offer (delivery, takeout, hours, menu, etc.).

    We plan to share this list with other local organizations, and promote it in our newsletter and email list. We hope that you take the time to answer this questionnaire. Thank you!

    Click HERE to see the list of local Latin American and Caribbean Cuisine you can order!

    (Updated 7/20/2020)

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    Higher Education

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    Call for Papers, Training and Conferences
    Council of American Overseas Research Centers (CAORC)


    CAORC is now accepting fellowship applications! CAORC offers two fellowship programs that enable recipients to visit and carry out research within it's network of Overseas Research Centers: the CAORC-NEH Senior Research Fellowship and the Multi-Country Research Fellowship.
    For more information visit:


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    CALL FOR PAPERS: IUP Hispanic Journal

    The editors of Hispanic Journal invite submissions of unpublished studies all year around. Hispanic Journal is published twice annually by the Department of Foreign Languages and the Graduate School of Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Its purpose is to publish original research and criticism in the areas of Spanish, Spanish American, Portuguese, Catalan, Galician, and Basque literatures, languages, linguistics, and cinema of any period. We also publish interviews and book reviews. Submissions may be written in Spanish, English, or Portuguese.

    • All manuscripts must follow the guidelines set forth by the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 8th ed., (2016).
    • Manuscripts should consist of at least 4,000 but not more than 7,000 words total.
    • Manuscripts must be single-spaced in Times 12 and written using Word 2007 or later.
    • In a cover letter, briefly present yourself, your work, and your work’s word count. *Submissions should be sent electronically to the editor (, or
    • All authors whose work is accepted for publication will be required to obtain a subscription to Hispanic Journal.
    • All articles published become the property of Hispanic Journal.

    The current annual subscription rate for individuals is $45.00 (U.S.), and $61.00 (abroad). The current annual subscription rate for institutions is $80.00 (U.S.), and $96.00 (abroad). These prices include shipping and handling.

    Send articles, book reviews and interviews to:

    Vicente Gomis-Izquierdo, Editor Hispanic Journal
    Department of Foreign Languages
    478 Sutton Hall
    Indiana University of Pennsylvania
    Indiana, PA 15705

    Questions? Please write to: or

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    Academic Organizations and Resources 
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    Employment Opportunities
    Latin American Studies Asociation (LASA) 
    LASA is free to all job seekers and provides you with access to employers The LASA Career


    and jobs from all over the world. For more information, please


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    Employment Opportunity:

    Randstad is a staffing company that has partnered with a local food manufacturing company in Fox Chapel.  Randstad does the majority of the hiring for their staffing needs.  The Randstad team works on site at the production facility and we are currently hiring for entry-level warehouse/production associates.  These positions are "temp-to-hire" so the employee would work for Randstad for approximately 90 days, before the client company would hire them permanently.  Randstad as well as the client company have robust benefit packages for their employees including: medical, dental, vision, 401k with match, free college courses, and discounts on services such as cell phone plans, rental cars, and hotels.

    Entry-level positions -- no previous experience is required.  We are looking for hard working, reliable, individuals with a positive attitude to join our team.

    The positions that we are hiring for range from $11.00/hr-$14.84/hr.  For more information, email:

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    The Global Switchboard is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that stewards a diverse network of people and organizations to transform the Pittsburgh region into a more globally engaged and equitable community. We utilize four tools to work towards our mission: a physical co-working space, a digital hub, a slate of programs and partnerships and a data-driven state of global engagement project. Together, these tools help us bring people together, encourage collaboration, and support our network.

    All for All is a community coalition working to advance immigrant inclusion in the Pittsburgh region. All for All is guided by A Community Blueprint: Helping Immigrants Thrive in Allegheny County, a comprehensive, community-designed plan. Collectively, coalition members seek to build a regional movement that advances immigrant integration, removes barriers to success, and improves equity for all foreign-born residents including marginalized groups such as refugees, low-income individuals, and other under-resourced sub-populations. The Global Switchboard houses the coalition.

    In addition to the knowledge, skills, and abilities listed below, the ideal candidate needs to be passionate about how people in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region engage the world, and the resulting implications on equity, human rights, and human dignity. Our office environment is small and informal, but dedicated and fast paced. A successful candidate is someone who is independent and confident in their work, has an ability to adjust to the demands of an evolving organization, and a commitment to teamwork suitable for a participatory organizational culture.


    Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities Required 

    Compensation: $43,000/ year

    The Global Switchboard’s compensation philosophy serves as a demonstration of the organization’s commitment to transparency and its employees. Starting salaries are determined by a set percentage range benchmarked on a review of nonprofits in Allegheny County.  

    Benefits: Full-time employees are eligible to enroll in health and dental insurance. Employees may also participate in a 403(b) retirement plan after six months employment. The Global Switchboard provides eleven paid holidays (6 permanent and 5 floating) a year as well as 15 days of paid vacation during their first year of employment.

    To Apply: Email your resume, cover letter, and list of references to

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    Copyright © 2020 Center for Latin American Studies, University of Pittsburgh, All rights reserved.
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