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COLLEGE OF LIBERAL ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES 

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (LAS) is the foundational college of DePaul University.  With an overarching emphasis on empowering leadership through the liberal arts, students can pursue studies in such wide-ranging areas as social and political studies, media and studio art, creative or professional writing, ethics, geographical information systems, forensic archaeology, international studies, public health, modern languages, and a myriad of multidisciplinary studies.

Overview

•       In the process of building leadership competence, LAS undergraduate students develop communication skills, reasoning abilities, and intercultural proficiency—all highly valued by prospective employers—in their chosen majors, many of which integrate interdisciplinary inquiry.  

From our 2015 graduating class, 93 percent of degree earners - undergraduate and graduate – were employed within six months of graduation. 

The college currently enrolls 2,441 undergraduate majors in 28 degree programs and 811 graduate students in 19 degree programs.

In 2015-16, 498 students completed internships and over 200 students studied abroad.

LAS is home to eleven of DePaul’s numerous centers and institutes.   

LAS is home to seven academic journals and three student publications.

Distinctions 

Discover Chicago, a component of DePaul’s successful freshman program, provides entering first-year students with an introduction to Chicago’s many dimensions, including its people, history, architecture and social and political systems. The city-as-laboratory/classroom approach to learning takes students into the neighborhoods, streets and institutions of Chicago.

LAS has partnered with the Art Institute of Chicago to provide free admission for all undergraduate and graduate students at DePaul.

The college supports student research through two grant programs for undergraduate students, the Undergraduate Research Assistantship Program (URAP) and Summer Undergraduate Research Grant (SURG) and, for graduate students, the Graduate Research Funding (GRF) program.

Creating Knowledge, a college journal exclusively devoted to undergraduate research, published its 9th volume in 2016, showcasing the scholarship and creative work of 29 students representing all disciplines and programs.

Student achievements are showcased on the Student Spotlight section of the college’s websi​te​​, including the six 201-16 Fulbright and Boren scholarship recipients. 

•       The Center for Community Health Equity, created in 2015 in collaboration with Rush University Medical Center to bring together community leaders, faculty and students to execute innovative research and develop interventions that promote community health equity.

•       A new center, Studio Chi (Computer and Humanities Interface) was launched in January 2017.  Studio Chi sponsors programming and workshops devoted to digital projects in a broad array of disciplines. 

The college’s Geography Department, recipients of the American Association of Geographers’ inaugural 2016 Award for Bachelors Program Excellence, has integrated drones into the course curriculum offering students the opportunity to learn about and engage in this emerging industry. The drone utilized in these courses demonstrates the latest technology in aerial photography and imaging.

New and unique master’s degree programs in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies and in Critical Ethnic Studies, along with a certificate program in Digital Humanities, join the college’s other new MA programs in Sustainable Urban Development and Modern Languages.​

Associate Professor of English, Miles Harvey, and his students collected over 70 oral histories from Chicago residents affected by youth violence, forming the basis of the book, "How Long Will I Cry? Voices of Youth Violence," and the play, the “How Long Will I Cry?,” performed at Steppenwolf Theatre.

New and unique master’s degree programs in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies and in Critical Ethnic Studies, along with a certificate program in Digital Humanities, join the college’s other new MA programs in Sustainable Urban Development and Modern Languages.

The college’s Geography Department has integrated drones into the course curriculum offering students the opportunity to learn about and engage in this emerging industry. The drone utilized in these courses demonstrates the latest technology in aerial photography and imaging.

LAS’s newest center, Center for Community Health Equity, was created in 2015 in collaboration with Rush University Medical Center to bring together community leaders, faculty and students to execute innovative research and develop interventions that promote community health equity.

About the Dean 

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Guillermo Vásquez de Velasco is the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences (LAS).  He previously served as Vice Provost and Dean of the College of Architecture and Planning at Ball State University, and as Executive Associate Dean of the College of Architecture at Texas A&M University.  

He joined DePaul University as Dean and Professor of Art, Media, and Design in 2016.  Prior to his tenure at DePaul, Ball State, and Texas A&M, Dr. Vasquez de Velasco held teaching and/or research positions at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands and the Sagrado Corazón University in Lima, Peru.  He earned his bachelor’s degree in architecture and urban planning in 1979 from Ricardo Palma University in Lima, Peru; his master’s degree in architecture in 1982 from the University of Toronto in Canada; and his doctoral degree in architecture from Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands in 1991.

Recipient of multiple awards and recognitions, Vásquez de Velasco has combined professional practice in architecture and urbanism, with teaching, scholarship, and academic administration into a career that celebrates Design Thinking, multidisciplinary collaboration, and the constant exploration of digital technologies in design and education.  He is a passionate advocate of the critical mission of the Liberal Arts in the 21st century and its key function in the education of future leaders.  In recognition of his seminal work in the early development and use of digital technology in education, he received a Teaching Excellence Award from the Association of Former Students of Texas A&M University.  Also, for the development of a wide variety of innovative international programs in Europe, Latin America, and Asia, he was recognized with the TAMU International Excellence Award.  And, most recently, he received the 2016 Arturo Montagu Lifetime Achievement Award from the Iberoamerican Society for Computer Graphics, known as SIGraDi.  The organization gathers researchers, educators and professionals in the fields of architecture, urban design, interior design, graphic design, product design and art whose work involves digital media. 

The College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences website: las.depaul.edu​.


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