IBC Speaker Series at TAMIU Explores Undocumented Children, Mexican Economy

TAMIU IBC Speaker Series Explores Undocumented Central American Children, Mexican Economy

The Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) International Bank of Commerce-sponsored Western Hemispheric Trade 2014-2015 Keynote Speaker Series will present two speakers in March and April at Texas A&M International University’s Student Center Ballroom.

Donna De Cesare

Dr. Donna De Cesare

The first presentation will be Wednesday, March 25 featuring Dr. Donna De Cesare, associate professor of Journalism at The University of Texas at Austin and 2013 Maria Moors Cabot Award Recipient. Dr. De Cesare’s presentation is “Unsettled/Desasosiego: Children in a World of Gangs.”

The second presentation,“Opportunities and Challenges for México Today,” is Wednesday, April 15 and features Dr. Diana Villiers Negroponte, public policy scholar from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

Both presentations are free and open to the public in the TAMIU Student Center Ballroom, with welcoming receptions at 7 p.m., followed by the lectures at 7:30 p.m. Both speakers will be available for book signings following the event.

During her presentation, De Cesare will discuss the history behind the current insecurity in Central America, which has resulted in increasing numbers of undocumented Central American children and youth seeking entry into the United States in 2014. She will also speak about the impact of violence and trauma on children and connect some of the experiences that Central American children face with situations children face in the United States.

Dr. Villiers Negroponte, on the other hand, will examine the high expectations for modernization of the Mexican economy under President Enrique Peña Nieto and the 11 structural reforms that he succeeded in passing through Congress. She will discuss questions such as how implementation of the principal reforms, energy and telecommunications progressed. She will also explore the question of how Peña Nieto’s administration has met serious security and political challenges following the reforms’ passages.

De Cesare is a 2013 Recipient of the Maria Moors Cabot Award for Journalism Enhancing Inter-American Understanding. This prestigious award is the oldest award for foreign correspondence and, like the Pulitzer, a major career recognition bestowed by the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

She joined the University of Texas faculty following a 20-year career as an award-winning freelance visual journalist. She continues to report on Latin America and is an affiliate faculty with UT’s Lozano Long Institute for Latin American Studies.

De Cesare’s photographic work is frequently exhibited nationally and internationally in museums and spaces housing art that fosters public education on issues of social concern. Her bilingual documentary book, “Unsettled/Desasosiego: Children in a World of Gangs,” published in 2013 by the University of Texas Press, has won recognition in the Best Photographic book category of Pictures of the Year International and been favorably reviewed and featured in numerous publications, a handful of which are mentioned in AfterImage, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Mother Jones, PRI’s The World, and numerous NPR programs including Latino USA with Maria Hinojosa.  She is currently a master teacher with the Gabriel García Marquez Foundation for Latin American Journalism and a consultant to the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma at Columbia University.

Negroponte serves as a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. She was a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution for eight years. As a lawyer and international trade expert, she writes and lectures on rule of law, institution building and energy in Latin America with particular focus on México and Central America.

Recent articles have also looked at Venezuela and Brazil. She wrote “Central America Confronts Violence and Public Insecurity” Brookings Working Paper (2010), “The Struggle to Make Peace in El Salvador: Conflict Resolution at the End of the Cold War” (2012), and edited “The End of Nostalgia: México Confronts the Challenges of Global Competition” (2013). Her multiple articles are found on the Brookings website, Newsweek, Financial Times and on the Freedom House blog.

Negroponte is also committed to economic development, having served with VSO (The British Peace Corps) in Uganda and with International Voluntary Service in the former Yugoslavia.

Educated at the London School of Economics & Political Science, Institute Catholique in Paris and the Ibero Americana in Mexico City, she received a Juris Doctor from American University and Ph.D. from Georgetown University. She has taught at Georgetown University and Fordham University in New York City.

The Western Hemispheric Trade Keynote Speaker Series presents practical and targeted lectures imparted by distinguished leaders, recognized experts and outstanding scholars in the trade and business arenas.

The Series brings to the University individuals of exceptional accomplishment and expertise to enhance the academic experience of Texas A&M International University students, faculty and the community.

For additional information on the Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) International Bank of Commerce 2014-2015 Keynote Speaker Series, please call 326.2820 email cswht@tamiu.edu  or visit http://freetrade.tamiu.edu/

Journalists who need additional information or help with media requests and interviews should contact the Office of Public Relations, Marketing and Information Services at prmis@tamiu.edu