UCIS Names New Directors for Pitt’s Asian Studies Center, Center for Latin American Studies

Issue Date: 
November 18, 2013

The University Center for International Studies has appointed two Pitt faculty members to serve as directors of its Asian Studies Center and Center for Latin American Studies.

NicoleNicole Constable Constable, a professor of anthropology in the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, will direct the Asian Studies Center, while Scott Morgenstern, a professor of political science in the Dietrich School, will direct the Center for Latin American Studies. Constable and Morgenstern will oversee the strategic and operational management of their centers. The appointments are effective Jan. 1, 2014.

Constable’s anthropologic expertise centers on the region comprising Hong Kong, China, the Philippines, and Indonesia. Her research focuses on cross-border marriages, Internet ethnography, the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act, and religion and labor protests among migrant workers.

“Nicole Constable will bring renewed vigor to our Asian Studies Center,” said Lawrence Feick, director of the University Center for International Studies. “She is passionate about Asia and passionate about the work done in the center. Nicole brings her immense knowledge of and experience in Asia, as well as her extensive skill as an effective University administrator. We are very enthused about the future of the center under her leadership.”

Constable was the associate dean of the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences from 2005-2012, with responsibilities for Graduate Studies and Research, and was the acting director of the Asian Studies Center in 2005. She resides in Squirrel Hill.

Morgenstern’sScott Morgenstern research focuses on political parties, electoral systems, and legislatures in Latin America. He replaces Pitt Professor of Anthropology Kathleen Musante, who will be stepping down as director of the Center for Latin American Studies after holding the directorship for 12 years.

“We could not ask for a new director with greater passion for Latin America and the Caribbean than Scott Morgenstern. Scott has worked and lived in eight Latin American countries and another six outside the region,” Feick said. “Scott’s teaching and research focus on Latin America and his experience in the region serve to ground all of his work in a fundamental understanding of the people and the institutions in Latin America.”

Morgenstern has served on several committees for the Center for Latin American Studies and was the primary investigator on a federal USAID grant for the agency’s political party development program. Earlier in his career, Morgenstern was a Peace Corps volunteer in Western Samoa, where he added Samoan to his Spanish fluency. He resides in Squirrel Hill.