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From Monte Albán to California: Connecting the Indigenous Past and Present in Oaxaca, México

Upcoming Summer Program Abroad

From Monte Albán to California: Connecting the Indigenous Past and Present in Oaxaca, México



From Monte Albán to California: Connecting the Indigenous Past and Present in Oaxaca, México

Eligibility: Open to current K-12 LAUSD educators from all disciplines.

Must be US citizens or permanent residents

Tentative Dates: June 26, 2023 - July 21, 2023

Location: Oaxaca, Mexico 


*Partially paid by U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad Program grant funding

 In this four-week summer seminar, K-12 (LAUSD) educators will survey the history, geography, ethnobotany, languages, and cultures of the Mexican state of Oaxaca. This state is famous for its many indigenous communities with ancient origins, vibrant arts and crafts traditions, and great biological and cultural diversity. The program will feature interdisciplinary lectures, discussions, and interactive workshops to train educators to integrate new international, area, and language content into the K-12 curriculum. Participants will learn elements of the Zaptotec language from native speakers from the Central Valley region of Oaxaca. Furthermore, the program includes weekly guided field trips to archeological sites, historical archives, and museums. By learning about indigenous Mexican cultures and Zapotec, teachers will be equipped to share this knowledge with their students in Los Angeles.


Program Requirements and Expectations:

This program is divided into three stages: 

1) Pre-departure Orientation

In preparation for the seminar in Oaxaca, participants will be required to attend a three-day orientation seminar at UCLA a month before departure. The seminar will include a series of interactive lectures, including discussions led by LAI-affiliated faculty whose research focuses on Oaxaca. The purpose of these lectures is to introduce participants to the history and culture of Mesoamerica, in particular Oaxaca. During this orientation, we will go over logistics and expectations. 

2) Program Abroad 

 The program abroad will consist of four weeks in Oaxaca. The program is scheduled to be Monday through Friday (Saturday and Sunday are off). Each day will begin with a class on the native language spoken in Oaxaca and a seminar in the afternoon. Each week will have a different theme. (1) geography, ethnobotany; the environment, and agriculture; (2) archaeology, epigraphy, the ancient calendar, and history;(3) women and gender, the arts, and textiles (4) public health, education, migration, and binational organizations in California and Oaxaca. Furthermore, we will have a weekly guided field trip to an archeological site. During the orientation, we will discuss the schedule in more detail. 

3) Follow-up Conference 

Teachers will be expected to submit and present their final projects. This will be approximately two months after returning from Oaxaca. 

Materials and Assignments: 

Participants will have access to reading materials, discussion questions, and other resources and assignments online via a CCLE course website. 

To receive LAUSD salary credit, participants must attend all sessions and access the online course site to complete readings and assignments. Participants will submit a reflective essay and standards-based lesson plan centered on the workshop's themes as their final assignment. 

*Please note that salary points are still pending  approval

Cost for the Participant: Registration Fee $250.00, Airfare, ground transportation, and some meals 

  1. Lodging, transportation to and from field trips, breakfast, and materials will all be paid by the program.
  1.  Participants are responsible for passport fees, international medical insurance, COVID-19 tests (if required), round-trip airfare to and from Oaxaca, ground transportation to and from the airports, alcoholic beverages, and incidentals.

Application Procedure and Requirements:

First Stage: 

  1. Complete online application Click Here
  2.  Supplemental materials: There will be a section within the online application to upload the following supplemental materials, all of which are required in order for your application to be considered.
  1.  Resume or CV (up to two pages)
  2.  Statement of Interest

What to address:Why are you interested in this abroad program?  How do you plan to integrate the knowledge and experience gained from this program in your classroom, school, and district?  Please limit your statement to a maximum of 800 words.

  1.  Letter of Reference

 Letter of reference should be provided by a collegue, principal, chair, advisor, or supervisor. The letter should address the applicant’s character, working ethics, and abilities to collaborate with others.  Letters must include letterhead and a signature.  Please ask your recommender to e-mail the letter  to

 All materials in this first stage of the application are due - February 13th 2023


All qualified applicants will be considered in accordance with the requirements and guidelines of UCLAS’s Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion 

Second Stage: Additional Materials (ONLY if you are accepted to the program)

Once you have been admitted into the summer program, you will be provided a link to upload the following documents:

  1. Copy of valid US Passport
  2.  Proof of COVID-19 vaccination (Maybe Required)
  3.  Proof of international medical insurance 
  4. LAI agreement form
  5. UCLA Waiver of Liability, Assumption of Risk, and Indemnity Agreement
  6.  UCLA liability form 
  7. Registration Fee
  8. City of Los Angeles Traveler Form 

If an accepted participant needs to withdraw for any reason, they must contact LAI Outreach and Community Engagement Coordinator Veronica Zavala at If you cancel your participation, UCLA is not liable for the cost of travel and registration fee is not refundable.


For questions contact: Veronica Zavala |