UMD: A Globally Connected University

UMD-Summer: Mexico: Immigration, Law and Disorder at the Border (MLAW)

Brownsville, United States
McAllen, United States
Monterrey, Mexico
south padre island, United States
Terms offered: 
Program Type: 
Credit Type: 
Minimum GPA: 
Non-UMD Students Eligible to Apply: 
Graduate Students Eligible to Apply: 
Language of Instruction: 

SU 19 MX

This class provides a first hand experience of cutting edge immigration topics that have been headlining the news and confronting policy makers and courts. Students will stay at the U.S.-Mexico border and learn what experts and residents from Mexico, during a trip to Monterrey, Mexico,  and the U.S. have to say about border walls, fences, detention facilities, asylum, caravans, and more.

This course is designed for students with a curious mind and adventurous spirit. You will be expected to engage in research pre-departure, and while at the border must be able to interact easily with immigrants, border residents, and students on both sides of the border.

The U.S.-Mexico Border Project will integrate class lectures and class discussion with interactions with faculty and students from University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley and Monterrey Tech in Monterrey Mexico. You will participate in an international conference on national security at the border and will engage in introductory research on border issues.  You will visit immigration and federal courts as well participate on a border tour, and be introduced to Tex-Mex culture including food and music. You will also have the opportunity to interact with students from the border and Monterrey, and immigrants from Mexico and Central America.

The research component of the course will require research design, interviews and participant observation.

You must be in good academic and judicial standing and you must not have any registration blocks to participate in this program. The minimum GPA for this program is listed above.

UMD Graduate and UMD Undergraduate students at the sophomore, junior, and senior levels are eligible to apply.

If you are interested in this program but do not meet the eligibility requirements, reach out to the program director (listed in the Contacts tab) to discuss your interest in the program.

This program is open to all majors.  Students with interest in immigration law and society at the U.S.-Mexico border, human rights and national security are encouraged to apply.

After you commit to the program, Education Abroad will enroll you the following three (3) credit UMD course:

  • MLAW359B: Special Topics: Mexico: Immigration, Law and Disorder at the Border

The credit you earn during this program will count as resident credit.


Students will engage in home-stays in Monterrey.
You will be matched with students at Monterrey Tech and at UT-RGV to help immerse you in border and Mexican cultures.
At the border, you will stay in new student dorms at UT-RGV in Brownsville.

The costs listed are for summer 2019.

Application Fee $50
Billable Costs
Billable costs are charged to your student account. They are due based on the Office of Student Financial Services and Cashiering's payment schedule. Be sure to check your statements when they are available.
Education Abroad Fee $500
This fee is charged to your account when the application status changes from "Accepted" to "Committed." This fee includes Education Abroad services including registration, billing, advising, risk management, and pre-departure orientation.
International Health Insurance $43
Tuition $3,138
This fee is charged to your UMD account upon course registration. This fee includes: Tuition, in-country transportation, course related activities, group meals, and teaching services.
Housing Fee $529
This fee represents the housing provided during the program.
Out-of-pocket Costs
Meals (estimate) $250
Visa $0
Passport $145
Roundtrip Airfare (estimate) $550
Course Materials $0
Optional Activities/incidental expenses $300
Optional trip cancelation/interruption Insurance (estimate) $180

NOTE: If you are a non-UMD graduate student, you will need to pay a $75 application fee to the UMD graduate school to participate in this program.

Please refer to the following resources for more information on funding study abroad

PLEASE NOTE: All University of Maryland study abroad programs are financially self-supporting and, therefore, subject to cancelation due to low enrollment.

Robert Koulish, Ph.D., Faculty Program Director, is the Director of MLaw Programs, administered through the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences (BSOS).  Koulish is also Joel J. Feller Research Professor in Government and Politics and Lecturer at Law at the UMD Carey School of Law in Baltimore, where he teaches a seminar in immigration law and policy. 

Dr. Koulish earned his doctorate in political science from the University of Wisconsin and his Bachelors degree from the University of Pennsylvania. His research focuses on US immigration law and policy, with a focus at the U.S. Mexico border, where he lived and conducted research for several years and taught.  More recently he is editor of a forthcoming book about immigration control and nationalism, and has authored several articles about risk and immigration detention.  

For course, itinerary or in-country information, please contact the Program Director. For general questions or assistance with applying, contact EA Short-term Programs.

As a part of this program, you will engage in the following activities:

  • Student presentations at border conference on national security issues;
  • Meetings and interactions with faculty, students and professionals at U.S. side and Mexico side of the border;
  • Guest lectures by leading experts in national security, immigration and human rights;
  • Border Tour to learn about impact of border militarization and criminalization on culture, economy and environment.
Term Year Application Deadline Admission Notification Program Start Program End
Summerterm 2019 03/03/2019 03/11/2019 05/22/2019 06/02/2019