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Pia Cano

Major: Race and ethnic studies (self-designed), minors in art history and global environmental studies

Clark Days: Pia arrived at Clark with a desire to study ethnic identities. Initially, Pia was hesitant to focus on Latin American communities, a practice that would center their experience as a Latinx person. Eventually, they felt more comfortable reflecting on their personal relationship to identity. Pia, who grew up in Santa Ana, California, is from a family with Central American roots. Their mother is from Honduras, and their father is from Mexico. They studied abroad in Southern Mexico, El Salvador, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. Throughout their studies, Pia discovered that there’s more gray space and nuance to identity than people may realize. They participated in the See You Collective and the Latin American Student Organization on campus.

Post-Commencement Plans: Pia is moving to North Carolina for an interpretive design internship with the National Park Service at Roanoke Island as part of the Latino Heritage Internship Program. They will teach people about local history.

Observation: “I took an anthropology course that highlighted the inequities and harmful practices people have pursued to ‘understand’ culture. It was enlightening. That was during my first year, so it encouraged me to be super sensitive and careful about how I framed this major.”