Diane Pearsall has lived and traveled in Mexico on several occasions. She studied in San Luis Potosi in 1973 and taught at the Instituto Interamericano in Veracruz, 1984-1985. She directed the Morelia Seminar in 1988, 1991, 1994, 1997, and 1999. Her interests include Latin American theater, the golden age of Mexican cinema, pedagogy, and sub-literature.


Location: Morelia, the capital of Michoacán, is a picturesque colonial city which was founded in 1541. Located in the mountains four hours west of Mexico City, Morelia enjoys a temperate climate year-round. A jacket or coat is necessary on winter mornings and evenings, but the days are always sunny and afternoons are warm. Students will take classes at CMI (Centro Mexicano Internacional), a private language institute in a restored colonial inn located in Morelia's historic downtown.


Tourist Information on Morelia

Eligibility: Students must be either sophomores, juniors or seniors at the time of participation, and have successfully completed Spanish 204 or its equivalent.

Expenses: Students pay regular Carleton tuition which covers the costs of instruction, room, board, some local transportation, program-arranged group travel and social events. Students are responsible for personal expenses, the cost of books, and round-trip transportation between the U.S. and Mexico City.

Travel Arrangements: Students are expected to arrange their own travel to Mexico City where the program begins, and back to the U.S. from Mexico City at the end of the program. Travel from Mexico City to Morelia and back, plus all group travel during the program, will be paid by Carleton.

Excursions: At the start of the program, students will spend several days in Mexico City. During the nine weeks spent in Morelia, students will go on several organized weekend trips. Included are trips to the colonial city of Guanajuato, Uruapan with its natural park and volcano, and a long weekend in the Yukatán. Students will also go on a theater excursion to Guadalajara. Day trips include the Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary, the pre-Colombian ruins at Tzintzuntzán, and other towns near Morelia known for their architecture and arts and crafts.

Housing: Students live with Mexican families, many of which have hosted other Carleton students over the years. Students will have their own room. They eat all their meals at home, are included in family activities, and are most often treated as members of the family.

Course of study: 16 credits

Spanish 290-17:

Directed Reading Winter break independent reading course on Mexican history, politics, and culture. 4 credits

Spanish 206-07:

Conversation and Composition (taught by Mexican instructors). 6 credits

Spanish 248-07:

Drama and Performance in Latin America Study of 20th-century Latin American theater. Includes attending performances of plays in Morelia. 6 credits

For more information, comments or questions, contact Diane Pearsall (

Last updated February 2000