ADVISOR: Nicole Hughes
Class of 2021
Iris Osorio-Villatoro was born and raised in southern California as a child of Salvadoran immigrants. She completed her undergraduate career at Stanford University with a major in Urban Studies and two minors in Psychology and Translation Studies. For her capstone project, she focused on analyzing women’s activism during the Salvadoran Civil War, attempting to highlight both the importance of testimonios as a way of understanding Latin American history and the role gender played in this context. Iris is passionate about immigrants’ rights, and has volunteered with multiple nonprofits that work to help provide translation services for immigrants detained at the border.
In summer 2020, she learned K’iche’ through the Mayan Language Institute, and hopes to continue studying the language while also enrolling in Nahuatl. She is also passionate about indigenous language revitalization in Central America and language access for indigenous immigrants in the United States. She hopes to continue finding ways to work on this issue alongside indigenous communities.
Iris plans to combine her interests in urban studies and language revitalization by continuing research on the history of nameplaces in Central America, highlighting the indigenous languages that have come to influence Central American geography as we know it today, and what nameplaces can tell us about power within a society.