Skip to main content

ASU strengthens Latin-America ties


April 06, 2007

ASU's Office of the Vice President for Global Engagement, under the direction of Anthony “Bud” Rock, is enhancing ASU's cooperative relationships with Mexico and Latin America through the establishment of a new global engagement unit devoted specifically to this strategically significant region.

By restructuring the university's former office responsible for Pan-American initiatives into a new, highly focused program development and support unit, Rock aims to make cooperation with Mexico “a fully productive and mutually beneficial relationship that will serve as a centerpiece of ASU's global engagement strategy.”

Rock has appointed Claudia Navarro as director to lead the activities of the unit, which will promote the university's strengths in education, research and economic development.

“We have every expectation that ASU collaboration with Mexico will yield knowledge and innovation significant to global challenges and relevant to the needs of our local communities,” Rock says.

The unit will manage and strengthen strategic relationships with existing Mexican partners, such as Tecnológico de Monterrey, Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia (CONACYT), the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de Mexico (ITAM) and Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico (UNAM). The unit expects to lead ASU into deeper relationships with Mexico through programs that may reach even more broadly into our respective educational and research communities.

In addition, the unit will work to bring focus to other potentially strategic collaborations in Latin America, particularly where these initiatives return high value to the ASU community, the Phoenix metropolitan area and the region. The unit will improve communication regarding global initiatives and networks, increase awareness of ASU within Mexico and Latin America, and foster opportunities for faculty, researchers and students to engage globally.

By engaging the university's senior leadership, the Mexico and Latin America unit will advance ASU's strategic goals by giving special emphasis to regional collaboration in support of the priority themes of sustainable development, economic competitiveness and technological innovation. Navarro regularly will convene a group of interested leaders, drawn from within ASU and the local community, to help define priority collaborations.

The unit also will assist ASU academic units with high-priority programs as appropriate.

“The establishment of the Mexico and Latin America unit sharpens ASU's strengths,” Navarro says. “We will make sure the existing strategic partnerships flourish and bring concrete benefits to ASU. I look forward to working with others to identify thematic niches and regional needs in Mexico and Latin America, where ASU can advance knowledge and innovation.”

Navarro has been at ASU for five years. She previously served as associate director for the Office of Pan American Initiatives.

Navarro, a native of Chile, was an Organization of American States and LASPAU Fellow (2002-2004). She has extensive experience coordinating strategic projects and developing linkages between ASU and institutions in the Americas. She led the negotiation and signing of the ASU-Tecnológico de Monterrey overarching agreement in October, and she managed the ongoing collaboration between both institutions. Navarro, who was the captain of the Chilean national volleyball team, holds graduate degrees in environmental planning from ASU and in architecture from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile.

“Claudia brings the level of expertise and enthusiasm to this position that will ensure ASU's continued growth and recognition in Mexico and Latin America,” Rock says. “She enjoys great respect within the university and has received high praise for her diligence and leadership to date in this arena. We look forward to her continued successes in helping advance ASU's global engagement agenda.”