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College of Arts and Sciences faculty mentoring

McNair scholar bridges cultures in life, research

Lysandra PerezIt’s fall 2014. New freshman Lysandra Perez, the first in her family to attend college, sits on the bed in her Streit-Perham Hall dorm room. The emotional farewells are done, and her parents are driving back home to the small town of Moxee, near Yakima. Her roommates won’t be arriving for another few days.

She is all alone. “What do I do now?” she remembers thinking in a moment of panic.

Fortunately, the panic didn’t last long. “I had to remind myself that going to college » More …

Learning Náhuatl

Miriam FernandezDoctoral student Miriam Fernandez discovers a new direction through language.

In August of 1521, Spanish and indigenous soldiers conquered Tenochtitlán, the capital of the Aztec Empire. Historians believe nearly a quarter million Tenochtitlán citizens died in the conquest, and all of the majestic temples, palaces, pyramids, and artifacts were destroyed. But the Aztec culture and its language— Náhuatl —survived, dominating much of central and eastern Mexico in the following centuries in spite of King Charles of Spain’s decree in 1560 that all Mexican natives were to be taught in Spanish. » More …