Continued Partnership Between Laspau and INICIA Educación

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS, July 18, 2017- Laspau is proud to be entering our seventh year of partnering with INICIA Educación, an impact investment fund focused on the improvement of the education system in the Dominican Republic. The organization catalyzes their mission through scholarship opportunities at a graduate study level as well as teacher education and educational innovation programs. Since 2012, INICIA Educación has granted scholarships to over 20 individuals to pursue Master´s degrees in education related fields at top-ranked programs in the United States and beyond. The INICIA Educación scholarship program will be accepting applications again in summer of 2017; a second application will open on a later date for studies in Latin America.

Please  check the INICIA Educación page on our website for detailed information on how to apply.

Learn more about INICIA Educación and their initiatives at

Read the press release (in Spanish)

Scholars at UC Berkeley Making an Impact

BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA,  July 7, 2017- On a recent trip to the west coast, the Laspau Executive Director Angélica Natera visited the University of California, Berkeley and met scholars from five Latin American countries pursuing graduate studies at the renowned Bay Area campus. The inaugural meeting brought together scholars from different scholarship programs administered by Laspau. Though studying on the same campus, this was the first opportunity the scholars had to meet in person. They exchanged their learning experiences from the scholarship application process to the benefits and challenges of pursuing graduate studies in a new country.

During the conversation, they also shared their motivations, the importance of the role of the family and friends in their lives, and their dreams for the future. “Everyone is studying in the fields that are critical to their home countries. It gives me a sense of optimism and hope that Latin America will be even stronger when these professionals return home with new knowledge, skills, and experiences. When opportunities are opened, especially in the area of education, young people dream high and begin making an impact early on”, says Natera.

The Laspau-administered scholars studying at UC Berkeley are pursuing diverse areas of research that are sure to positively impact the region:


  • Catalina Vanoli – Master’s degree candidate in Transportation Engineering
  • Luciano Felix Rosso – Master’s degree candidate in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research


  • Daniela Valente Andrade – PhD candidate in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (Infectious Diseases and Immunity)
  • Gabriel Mendes Borges – PhD candidate in Social Sciences (Demography and Population Studies)
  • Luisa Mayumi Arake de Tacca – PhD candidate in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (Comparative Biochemistry)
  • Raissa Estrela Curado – PhD candidate in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (Molecular & Cell Biology)
  • Rubens Golçalves Salsa Júnior – PhD candidate in Mechanical Engineering


  • Carlos Orozco Rios – PhD degree candidate in Engineering (Structural Materials)
  • Jessica Camacho Amado – Master’s degree candidate in Architecture (City Planning)
  • Juan Felipe Carvajal Vinasco – PhD degree candidate in Civil and Environmental Engineering


  • Jose Tinoco Ochoa – PhD candidate in Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning


  • Rosa Jimenez Barrios – PhD degree candidate in Biological and Biomedical Sciences (Integrative Biology)

Look out for their success stories, as well as those of other Laspau-administered scholars, in future editions of eNews!

Laspau and UNISAL host the Fourth Annual STHEM Consortium Conference in Brazil

LORENA, BRAZIL, July 7, 2017- Laspau, in collaboration with the Salesian University of São Paulo (Centro Universitário Salesiano de São Paulo – UNISAL), carried out the fourth annual STHEM Consortium Program Conference on May 22-26, 2017. The event marked the start of a yearlong training on innovative trends in higher education which involved professors and academic leaders of 47 public and private universities in Brazil. This is the fourth cohort of professors and leaders to participate in the program.

Photo courtesy of STHEM Brazil

Comprised of a series of intensive workshops, the program was led by professors from universities such as Olin College, Tecnológico de Monterrey and Université du Québec à Montréal. These experts shared different teaching methodologies with Brazilian professors to improve classroom content development, assessment, and learning management.

Photo courtesy of STHEM Brazil

The STHEM Consortium was established in 2014, led by Laspau and UNISAL, with the participation of a pioneering group of public and private higher education institutions in Brazil. It works to incorporate academic innovation into participants’ institutions, and has done so with great success.

Though this is a year-long program, professors from the participating universities continue implementing changes after they complete the program, incorporating methodologies in their teaching practice that reflect student-centered learning as well as creating communities of practice in their respective universities. Participants also remain connected to a broad network of experts in this area, exposing them to a variety of approaches to teaching and learning that are geared toward producing leaders in STEM-related practice and research.

For more information on the STHEM Consortium, please read about Fabio Garcia Reis, one of the Consortium founders, or  visit the STHEM Brasil website (in Portuguese).

For more information on University Innovation programs like the STHEM Consortium, please contact our Program Manager for Academic Innovation, Colleen Silva-Hayden.

Laspau, Microsoft and U-Planner Lead Summit on Trends of High-Performing Universities

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS, July 7, 2017- A new initiative led jointly by Laspau, Microsoft Corporation’s Higher Education Division and U-Planner, a Chilean entity that develops technology solutions for the education sector was launched in March. The initiative, Summit on Trends of High-Performing Universities brought together presidents and academic deans from universities across Latin America to discuss active learning and new teaching techniques, and the use of big data and advanced educational technology in their universities.

Speakers included:

  • Laspau Trustee and Ford Foundation Professor of the Practice in International Education and Director of the Global Education Innovation Initiative and of The International Education Policy Program at Harvard University, Fernando Reimers
  • Laspau Trustee and Executive Director of the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University, Ned Strong
  • Laspau Executive Director, Angélica Natera
  • Executive Director of Active Learning at the John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) at Harvard University, Anas Chalan
  • Senior Lecturer in the Department of Physics and Associate Director of the Experimental Study Group at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Peter Dourmashkin
  • U-Planner Executive Director, Juan Pablo Mena
  • U-Planner Strategic Advisor, Jorge Yutronic
  • Director of Public Sector Markets (LATAM) at Microsoft, Guillermo Almada
  • President of Telefónica, Claudio Muñoz
  • CEO of Fundación Chile, Marcos Kulka
  • CEO of CORFO, Patricio Feres

The first event took place on March 22-23 at the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard University, and subsequent events were held in Chile and Mexico. Altogether, 30 universities participated in the summit. Within the framework of this event, participants were also able to meet with members of the U-Planner to learn and exchange specific strategic goals of universities through intelligent solutions designed for higher education.

For more information on U-Planner, visit