Produced in 2017 by Juan Carlos Davila, Ph.D. Candidate in Latin American and Latino Studies,
this video provides an overview of the research center's history and its overall work.

About the RCA 

Since 1992, the Research Center for the Americas (formerly the Chicano Latino Research Center from 1992-2018) is the first in the University of California system to advance a broad program of interdisciplinary research that brings together Chicanx/Latinx and Latin American studies, including over 90 faculty and hundreds of students at UC Santa Cruz.

Since its founding by faculty in Latin American and Latino Studies, the RCA's scope has been hemispheric. The RCA advances three core areas in higher education that fulfill the University of California’s mission:

  • supporting multidisciplinary research and community initiatives,
  • mentoring and creating professional development opportunities for primarily under-represented and/or first-generation students, and
  • hosting thought-provoking public events about issues and questions that matter to both scholars and the communities in which we live and work.

Our goals are to support and promote cross-border research that contributes to an enriched understanding of our interconnected lives and futures. Primarily drawing from and bringing together the social sciences, humanities, and arts, our work explores the incredible diversity of the Americas, with specialization on research areas that draw on the expertise of our affiliated faculty. We are also committed to educational equity and thus, teach-mentor undergraduate students to think critically and to prepare them for successful professional careers and actively support graduate students' research and professional development opportunities.

We have also hosted scholars from Latin America, collaborated with Mexican institutions and individual scholars across the Americas, and are a member of Consejo Latinoamericano de Ciencias Sociales (Latin American Council of Social Sciences).

We invite you to learn about the RCA Director's Initiatives and a listing of events open to the public at our News and Events page.

About the Logo

The first generation of students and faculty affiliated with the Chicano Latino Research Center (CLRC), now known as the Research Center for the Americas, created the circular red logo. They drew inspiration from Mixteco symbolism highlighting the pre-columbian presence of the original peoples in the Americas, while being inclusive to all people that have chosen the Americas as home. The original design consisted of feet going around repeated circles. In the current version, the feet became more abstract, but kept the impression of mobility and resemblance to indigenous, arabic, and contemporary designs. 


     We are housed in Casa Latina at Merrill College. Click here for a map.