This AIM Overseas program offered by University of La Salle is designed to give students a strong understanding of the complex issues around migration and immigration using the example of Mexico as a case study.
Over the course of 3 weeks students will study Mexico’s unique position as a key geographic pathway, where migration movements are from the southern border into Mexico, from the northern border into the US and also within Mexico.
The classes will examine the roles of the various stakeholders involved in migration issues both, at a domestic level by the Mexican federal government, local authorities, NGO’s and, at an international level by the Canadian and US governments. The program will delve into the various facets of immigration to analyse not only the economic, legal and political consequences, but also the social aspects and the human rights issues it raises.
The program will examine this environment and the various factors that influence regional mobility patterns, taking into consideration the historical background and the current situation, as viewed by key players and academics.
* Details of the 2018 program are still subject to final change *
Over the course of 36 academic contact hours, you will attend academic classes and guest lectures around the following topics:
- Overview of migration patterns throughout Mexican history
- Contemporary Mexican Society
- Introduction to economic, social and political issues of Mexico – US migration
- Transit migration: human rights and legal issues
- The Rio Grande, Mexico’s northern border and trans nationality issues
- Mexico- US Migration Management
- Human trafficking and migration
- Forced displacement
- Mexican agricultural workers; Internal migrants rights
- US Immigration Policy
- The gender perspective, role of women in migration
- NGOs and social justice issues
- The future patterns of migration
One of the true highlights of this phenomenal program is the array of in-depth professional and cultural activities that are included in the program.
Over the course of 20 hours, students will be taken on site visits. The places students are likely to visit include:
- Refugee centre
- Temporary shelter for transit migrants
- Local NGO organisation
- A night walk, which simulates migrants try to cross the border between Mexico and the United States.
Over the duration of the program you will discover many of Mexico City’s most famous places, as well as some of the more intimate nooks and crannies of this vast, diverse city. La Salle’s tour guide, Arnaldo, is absolutely revered – described universally as ‘a walking book’. He is dynamic and engaging and not a detail is missed during his tours!
Below is a list of cultural activities students will participate in as part of the program:
- Tour of the historical Downtown Center
- Pyramids of Teotihuacan, Plaza of the three Cultures and Basilica of Guadalupe
- Coyoacán, Frida Kahlo Museum, Trotsky Museum, Central Plaza
It is recommended that program participants looking to gain some understanding of the issues faced by Mexican and Central American trying to reach the US read Enrique’s journey by Sonia Nazario before attending the program.
This non-fiction book, based on a Pulitzer prize-winning series of articles in the Los Angeles Times, tells the story of a 17 year old boy from Honduras who wants to be reunited with his mother, who too poor to feed her children, left Honduras to work in the US 11 years earlier.
The book retraces the dangerous and illegal trek Enrique has to make up the length of Mexico – clinging to the sides and tops of freight trains – to reach his mother in the US.
Universidad La Salle
Universidad La Salle (ULSA), founded in 1962, is a private institute for higher education with its main campus located in Mexico City. The university is amid Mexico’s top 7 private universities and ranked in the top three of various academic areas. Mexico is a prime location to study migration, as it is the site of much movement, particularly in and out of neighbouring nations. The experiences of those who make the move are sometimes overshadowed by the political and social headlines which surround them – having first hand experience where this migration takes place will be invaluable to studies and developing empathy.
The course is taught by Professor Luis Demetrio Moreno in conjunction with a small number of guest lecturers. Luis Demetrio holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from the Universidad Iberoamericana, an Master’s degree from Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and is currently doing his PDH at UNAM.
You will be staying at Hotel Escandon, located only a few blocks away from the University campus. You will be sharing a double room with another AIM Overseas program participant. Each room has its own bathroom facilities. Breakfast is included, please note that it is customary in Mexico you will need to pay a small tip for the service.
Hear the experiences of other students on this program
“El tren!! La Bestia!!” I pick up a box of food bags and start running to the tracks. At this point I’m not sure if anyone else is coming until I turn around to see the rest of the group hot on my heels looking as bewildered as me. My heart is racing and I have only half and idea of what is actually happening. The train signals again. Some drivers slow down, some don’t. This one slowed, although its sheer size and momentum sends my heart racing again. The immigrants are at the rear of the train and the closer they get, the more real the danger of the journey becomes…”
- Ashleigh, Bachelor of International Relations & History. READ MORE
“Our next stop was the Templo Mayor, an ancient temple of the Aztec’s dedicated to two of their gods, Huitzilopochtli the god of war and Tlaloc the god of rain and agriculture. In Aztec times, sacrifices would occur here to please the gods, sometimes so many the stone steps would be soaked red. The ancient ruins and the museum adjacent were bustling with tourists and locals alike.” – READ MORE
“Standing at the top of Teotihuacan’s Pyramid of the Sun was one of the most surreal moments I have ever experienced. The ancient city of Teotihuacan is thousands of years old and has been home to many civilisations, and I, a girl from a small country town in southern Western Australia, am standing at the top of this monolithic pyramid looking down the Avenue of the Dead. I had never had a strong interest in Mexico, however I am pleasantly proved wrong as we explore this beautiful country.”
- Ashleigh, Bachelor of International Relations & History. READ MORE
Mexico is a country between the U.S. and Central America that’s known for its beautiful beaches of the Pacific and Gulf of Mexico and diverse landscape of mountains, deserts and jungles. Ancient Aztec and Mayan ruins are scattered throughout the country, as are Spanish colonial-era towns. Mexico is loved for its coasts, jungles, volcanoes and cities, as well as its superbly tasty food, spectacular ancient civilisations, inspired art and most importantly the charming, hospitable, real people. Mexico is an endless adventure for many visitors because of its ten thousand kilometres of coastline, cactus-strewn deserts and wildlife-rich lagoons.
Located in the centre-south of Mexico, Mexico City is the densely populated, high- altitude capital of Mexico. It’s known for the Templo Mayor (a 13th century Aztec temple), cathedrals and the Palacio Nacional, which houses historic murals. Mexico’s pre-Hispanic civilizations built some of the world’s great archaeological monuments in this city, including Teotihuacán’s towering pyramids and the Pyramid of the Sun. The Spanish colonial era left beautiful towns full of tree-shaded plazas and richly sculpted stone churches and mansions, while modern Mexico has seen a surge of great art from the likes of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo. Mexico City is the oldest continuously inhabited city in the Western Hemisphere and the greater Mexico City area carries the largest population for any city worldwide. Top-class museums and galleries document the country’s fascinating history and its endless creative verve. Popular culture is just as vibrant, from the underground dance clubs and street art of Mexico City to the wonderful handicrafts of the indigenous population.
Mexico is a great location to examine the strengths and weaknesses of a health system in terms of access to health care, quality of care, efficient supply of services and the financial sustainability of the system.
From leafy suburbs to the historical centre, Mexico offers a wonderfully diverse environment and a range of activities: Centro Historico (the historical centre of the city), Spanish colonial architecture, great museums, pre-Hispanic waterways, spectacular pyramids nearby, volcanoes and the list goes on …
Mexico City’s main airport is the Benito Juárez International Airport (MEX). The airport is not too far from the city centre (only around 20km), but gridlock traffic can make this a very long trip if you are not arriving/departing early in the morning or late in the evening.
Getting around Mexico City is very easy and extremely cheap. A comprehensive, clean and reliable metro service runs all over the city from early until late. There are special security-guarded carriages for women and children although the metro is quite safe. The metro is supplemented by a regular, although quite confusing, labyrinth of buses that criss-cross the city. These old behemoths chug around the city, doors and windows open and often crammed with passengers. They are ideal for short hops from A to B.
Both the metro and the buses are extraordinarily cheap at only 10-20c per trip. The only real inconvenience is that you need to have a constant supply of small change on hand in order to pay for them, so take our advice and hold on to any small change you get because it will definitely come in handy!
Taxis in Mexico City are very cheap but can be inconsistent. Some companies are good and reliable, others you don’t want to use. You’ll be able to get lots more detailed information about this once you have paid your final program fee. The host university will also provide you plenty of orientation advice upon your arrival.
When you first get to Mexico City, the University will give you a comprehensive orientation that will cover how to get around by public transport.
All our programs are designed to count for credit as electives. However, it is up to your university to decide whether they will approve some credit for your participation in one of our programs. Normally it is a course convenor, Head of Department or program convenor who approves your credit.
Course convenors will not be able approve credit for a course unless you have a copy of the syllabus, so you should not visit your course convenor until you have received a copy of the course syllabus from AIM Overseas. You will receive this after you have been accepted on the program, along with information about how to apply for credit at your university.
You might be able to obtain the $6000+ OS-HELP loan, as well as a scholarship from your university, when participating in an AIM Overseas program.
Our programs are designed so that eligible Australian students can access the OS-HELP scheme, which can provide funding of over $6,000 for international study experiences.
We give you detailed information about OS-HELP and how to apply for it in your Initial Consultation with us, as well as in your AIM Overseas acceptance pack.
Many Australian universities offer scholarships for their students to take part in overseas study programs. We will provide you information on scholarships that we are aware of at your university as part of your application/acceptance for a program. You can also check your university’s international office webpage to see what might be offered.
Applications for our July 2018 programs are now closed.
We are no longer taking applications for our July 2018 round of programs. Applications for our January 2019 programs will be open on May 14th.
If you wish to know more, or if you have any questions about our programs please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or (02) 9975 7792. You can also refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.
Alternatively, you can register your interest now for a January 2019 or July 2019 program, meaning you’ll receive updates (via email and phone) prior to the application deadline and when applications are open.