What is LAM

Latin America(n) Matters is a student organization at the Harris School of Public Policy that aims to promote discussion about public policy in Latin America, and a Latinamerican perspective of public policy in the world. LAM seeks to:

  1. Build a long-lasting community
  2. Create awareness about what is going on in Latin America
  3. Showcase Harris in Latin America

Therefore, LAM will:

  • Promote activities to increase the awareness of the economic, social and political situation in Latin America from a public policy perspective, both at the Irving B. Harris School of Public Policy and at The University of Chicago.
  • Establish an information channel for Latin American issues among LAM members and non-members, taking advantage of the diversity of origin of our members.
  • Promote a better understanding of the culture and idiosyncrasy of Latin American countries within the University of Chicago community.

Who We Are

LAM has a second and first year board to secure continuity throughout the years. We look forward to having the most diverse board members.

The members of the 2nd year Executive Committee are elected in the Spring Quarter prior to the academic year, and the 1st year Executive Committee are elected at the beginning of the Fall Quarter of the academic year in question.

For the Academic year 2020-2021 LAM’s board is the following:

Second Year Executive Committee

Andrés Fortunato (Argentina)


Andrés Fortunato (MPP) is porteño -from Buenos Aires-. He studied Philosophy at the Universidad de Buenos Aires and has more than 7 years of experience in the public sector of his home country in different levels and areas. He is interested in economic development in Latin America and came to Harris to acquire data skills and dive into economics courses. He is a Fulbright Scholar and Irving Harris Fellow. 

Nelson Puc Cruz (México)

Vice President

Nelson Puc Cruz (MPP) is originary from Chetumal, Mexico. He studied Economics and Finance at the University of Quintana Roo and came to UChicago to complete his MPP as a Fulbright Scholar. Before coming to UChicago, he worked at the Quintana Roo state government.

Paola Riveros Castro (Colombia)

Internal Relations, Media and Communications

Paola (MPP) holds a bachelor's degree and a Master’s in Economics at Universidad Nacional de Colombia. Before Harris, Paola worked as a research assistant in the External Sector Department at the Central Bank of Colombia and as an advisor of Social Security in the Ministry of Labor. In her last experience, she was in charge of supporting economic, financial, and fiscal analyses about the Social Security System in the Ministry of Finance. After Harris, she would like to work in the design, implementation, and evaluation of public policies for the health care system in Colombia.

Alberto Crespo (México)


Alberto is a 24 years old MPP student from Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, Mexico. He studied Accounting at Universidad La Salle, and is currently studying Political Science and Public Administration at Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM) in its online format. After graduating from Accounting he worked as a Financial Statements Auditor for PriceWaterhouseCoopers and as Chief of the Department of Strategic Planning and Budget Control for the Human Rights and Social Attention of Violence Sub-Secretariat of Tamaulipas State Government. During his time at Harris I have served as Co-Treasurer at the University of Chicago Mexican Association, as Harris Student Government Finance Committee member and as LAM’s first year treasurer.

Paula Gaviria (México)

Internal Relationships

Paula Gaviria is an MPP candidate. She is from Mexico City, Mexico. She studied Psychology at the Universidad Iberoamericana and a Masters in Psychoanalysis in the SPM.  Prior to Harris she worked in the design and implementation of a project in prison working with women and their children, as a psychotherapist in her private practice and as a professor in the psychology department at the Universidad Iberoamericana. After Harris Paula wants to work in the development, implementation, and evaluation of programs focused on early childhood development and equity.

Catalina Mican Rivera (Colombia)

External Relations

Catalina (MPP) studied Economics and History with a minor in multidisciplinary development studies and a Master's in International Studies. Before coming to Harris she devoted 7 years of work experience to social policy matters from the private and public sectors. She has specialized in the Colombian Victims reparation policy and social security nets.