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Mexican Migration Field Research Program (MMFRP)

The Mexican Migration Field Research Program (MMFRP) is a nationally and internationally renowned academic program housed at the University of California, San Diego. The program:

  • Trains the next generation of immigrant advocates, giving them substantive expertise on international migration and advanced skills in data collection and analysis
  • Expands our knowledge of the consequences of migration and forced displacement, using fieldwork-based, binational, team research
  • Disseminates its findings through publications, web-based reports and briefings for public officials and the mass media

During the yearlong program, approximately 35 undergraduate and graduate students – based at UC San Diego and at the program’s Mexican partner institutions – collaborate on an interdisciplinary, multinational research team. Through coursework and time in the field, students develop skills to collect and analyze both qualitative and quantitative data using established methods from the social sciences. The classroom component of MMFRP consists of a sequence of courses in which students learn about international migration, field research methods, and academic writing. Participants also spend a minimum of nine days in the field gathering data. The course sequence includes:

  • Fall 2019: Sociology 125: Sociology of Immigration (4 units)
  • Winter 2020: Sociology/Urban Studies and Planning 188: Mexican Migration Field Research Practicum (8 units, including travel and fieldwork in Tijuana)
  • Spring 2020: Sociology 109M: Research Reporting (4 units)

Participation in MMFRP is by application only and Spanish proficiency is required. The deadline to apply is September 1, 2019, and applicants will be notified of their acceptance by the start of fall quarter. To apply, please fill out this google form (including a 250-word personal statement) and enroll in Sociology 125 for fall 2019.

The MMFRP is co-directed by Abigail Andrews, Assistant Professor of Sociology, and Melissa Floca, Chief Strategy Officer at the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies. It is based at the Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies at the School of Global Policy and Strategy, in collaboration with the UC Mexico Initiative, Sociology Department, Center for Comparative Immigration Studies, and Latin American Studies Program.

Established in 2004, the MMFRP has been recognized by The Chronicle of Higher Education as one of the nation’s most innovative efforts, in any field, to create undergraduate research opportunities at a major research university. It provides hands-on research training and fieldwork experiences in both Mexico and the United States. Participants gather policy-relevant data on issues related to migration between the U.S. and Mexico, author papers based on the field data they gather, and present their findings to academics, policy-makers, NGO leaders, and journalists in both countries.