Jul 29, 2011    #145
Contact: Laura Byerley
(816) 235-1592

Miguel Carranza becomes director of UMKC's new Latina(o)/Chicana(o) Studies program

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) is pleased to announce the appointment of Miguel A. Carranza, Ph.D., as director of the UMKC College of Arts and Sciences' new Latina(o)/Chicana(o) Studies program. The Latina(o)/Chicana(o) Studies program will be an interdisciplinary program, and scholars from all fields will be encouraged to participate. Carranza will begin his duties at UMKC on Sept. 1.

"UMKC is committed to ensuring that Latina(o)/Chicana(o) Studies is a respected and valued part of our academic curriculum and intellectual community," said UMKC Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Gail Hackett, Ph.D. "As a widely-recognized leader and innovative educator, Dr. Carranza possesses the vision and expertise to lead the University to the next level in expanding the university life and learning opportunities for our diverse campus community."

Carranza currently serves as professor of Sociology and Ethnic Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). His research has centered on the fields of Chicano, Latino and Mexican-American Studies and Ethnic Studies, with a focus on Latino children, mentoring, Midwestern Chicano/Latino communities, immigration and language attitudes.

During his 36 years at UNL, Carranza has served as director of the Institute for Ethnic Studies (IES), coordinator of Latino and Latin American Studies, undergraduate research coordinator for Sociology and chief advisor for African American/Black Studies, Chicano/Latino Studies, Ethnic Studies, Latin American Studies and Sociology. At the UNL College of Arts and Sciences, he served as associate to the dean for Planning & Programming and associate dean for Personnel Issues. He was appointed as the first chair of the inaugural Chancellor's Commission on the Status of Minorities in 1987 and as the first director of the Minority Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program in 1990.

Through his work with students, Carranza has developed an expertise in student recruitment and retention. He often taught in the University Honors Program, which included a freshman course titled "The Lives of At-Risk Youth and Adolescents." He also taught in UNL's former skills-building program, the University Freshman Foundations Program.

Carranza received UNL's Teaching Council/Parents Association Recognition for Contributions to Students (2010, 2005 and 1999), the NAACP Lincoln Branch's "Leola Bullock" Distinguished Community Service Award (2009), a Big 12 Faculty Travel Fellowship (2005) and nominated for the Washington, D.C. Advocacy Institute's "Leadership for a Changing World" Award. In 2009, he was appointed by the Secretaries of the Department of Health & Human Services and Department of Labor to the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) national Working Group.

Carranza received a Ph.D. (1977) and M.A. (1974) in Sociology from the University of Notre Dame. He received a B.A. in Education (1971) from Kearney State College (now the University of Nebraska at Kearney). He and his spouse, Christine Thiesfeld-Carranza, have two adult children, Alicia and Antonio.

About the University of Missouri-Kansas City:

The University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC), one of four University of Missouri campuses, is a public university serving more than 15,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional students. UMKC engages with the community and economy based on a four-part mission: life and health sciences; visual and performing arts; urban issues and education; and a vibrant learning and campus life experience. For more information about UMKC, visit You can also find us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and watch us on YouTube.

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This information is available to people with speech or hearing impairments by calling Relay Missouri at (800) 735-2966 (TT) or (800) 735-2466 (voice).


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