Student Organizations

Latino Student Alliance (LSA)
Fuego Dance Team (Fuego)
Hispanic American Network at Darden (HAND)
La Casa Bolívar (Spanish House)
La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, Inc. (LUL)
Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Inc. (LTA)
Latin American Law Organization (LALO) at the School of Law
Latin American Student Association (LASA) at Darden
Sigma Lambda Upsilon/Señoritas Latinas Unidas Inc. (SLU)
Society of Caribbean Awareness (SOCA)
Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)
Towards a Better Latin America (TBLA)

Latino Student Alliance (LSA)

Description:  The Latino Student Alliance (LSA) is the umbrella organization for the Hispanic/Latino Community at the University of Virginia.  The vision of LSA is to be the representative voice of Hispanic/Latino privileges, rights and issues, as well as to strengthen and empower the Hispanic/Latino community inside and outside the University.  It is a working group that brings together leaders of the diverse Hispanic/Latino and Latin American student organizations. The goal is to facilitate communication and exchange of ideas among the various organizations, to coordinate scheduling of events and activities, and to collaborate on worthy projects (such as Hispanic Heritage Month and Latino Awareness Week). Membership in the LSA is open to all students. We encourage you to join one of our programming committees or organizations under our umbrella.

Highlighted Events:

Kick-off is the first event of Hispanic Heritage Month that brings together Hispanic/Latinos from every corner of the University to celebrate our rich history and culture as well as sharing them with non-Latinos. This event hosts different various UVa Latino groups and organizations to open our Hispanic Heritage Month with a fun games, food, and music. Our idea is to bring both our Latino as well as our American roots together in this event, which will be presented and shared with the rest of UVA’s student community.

Ritmo Latino is our closing event for Latino Week.  It showcases dance and various performances.  This year we were able to have performers from universities across the state showing their talents in everything from spoken word to the tango.

How to find out more:  To join LSA or to learn more, please contact Jackie Restrepo.

LSA WebsiteLSA Facebook | LSA Instagram | LSA Twitter

Fuego Dance Team (Fuego)

Description: Fuego Dance Team promotes Hispanic cultural awareness by showcasing diverse dance styles from Latin American culture. We not only focus in folkloric styles from different countries such as festejo from Peru and caporales from Bolivia, but also perform more modern dance styles such as reggaeton, salsa, bachata, merengue, and hip-hop. Other than our influence in Latino cultural awareness we also form part of the diverse dance community on grounds collaborating with other dance groups and serving as entertainment in various important events around grounds.

Highlighted Events:

Our most well-known events alongside with LSA are the FLAVORS and RITMO LATINO talent showcases. These two events usually serve as the closing events for Hispanic Heritage Month and Latino Week, respectively. They include various fun and entertaining acts and of course big Fuego dance performances.

How to find out more: If you have any questions or want to find out more about Fuego Dance team such as how to join, please contact Alejandro Nava Moncada.

Fuego Facebook


Hispanic American Network at Darden (HAND)

Description: The Hispanic American Network at Darden represents the interests of Hispanic American students; creates awareness and promotes the Darden School to prospective Hispanic American MBA candidates; creates, maintains, and strengthens ties with Hispanic American Darden alumni; supports career development opportunities for its membership; and partners with the Darden community to promote a forum for exploration of diversity within the Darden, University of Virginia, and Charlottesville communities and businesses at large.

Highlighted Events:

The Hispanic American Network at Darden hosts a variety of events and activities throughout the year.

  • NSHMBA Annual Conference and Career Expo
  • Hispanic Heritage Month First Coffee and Alumni Profiles
  • Deutsche Bank Diversity Reception
  • Accenture Meet and Greet
  • Columbia Business School Hispanic Summit

How to find out more: Contact Alvaro Mendizabal.

HAND Website


La Casa Bolívar (Spanish House)

Description: La Casa Bolívar (Spanish House) a language/culture immersion residence hall affiliated with the Spanish Department and closely linked to the Hispanic/Latino student community. Through its name, La Casa Bolívar honors UVA’s first Latin American student, Fernando Bolívar, nephew of patriot Simon Bolívar.

Highlighted Events:

The Casa hosts regular events of interest to students who speak or are learning Spanish!  See our website for information on our Cine Club, our Circulo de Literatura, our game nights, Casa dinners open to all, Telenovela clubs, Noche Bohemia, Tertulias and more!

How to find out more: If you have questions or want to find our more, please contact email Katherine Krudys.

La Casa Website | La Casa Facebook

casa bolivar

La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, Inc. (LUL)

Description: La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, Inc. seeks to take a leadership role in meeting the needs of Latino and greater minority communities through Academic Excellence, Community Service, Cultural Awareness, and a unique Brotherhood. Founded in 1982 at Cornell University, we are the only Latino fraternity charted at all Ivy League universities. Our fraternity strives to become the premier Latino fraternity in the nation, comprised of the best and brightest leaders committed to education and service. Though we are Latino based, we are not Latino exclusive, we accept men from all different backgrounds which makes our brotherhood even greater and diverse. Founded in 1999 at UVA, we are the only Latino fraternity on grounds. We strive to meet the shortcomings of Latinos and other minorites through our community service, social, cultural, and educational events we hold thoughout the academic year. Our goal is to provide a home away from home for Latino men while providing them with various resources, the cultivation of professionalism and leadership, and a support system for academic achievement. For more information please visit our website and follow us on our social media!

Highlighted Events:

The Alpha Epsilon chapter of La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, Inc. has a deep commitment to service and cultural programs. One of our annual events is the Latinos In Education panel which serves to bring together a wide variety of expert speakers to discuss with students where Latinos are succeeding and the challenges they face in K-12 as well as in higher education.

How to find out more: Contact Andre Sanabia.

LUL WebsiteLUL Facebook | LUL Instagram | LUL Twitter


Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Inc. (LTA)

Description:  The Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Inc. (ΛΘΑ) founded in 1975 is the first and largest Latina-based Sorority in the nation.  The purpose of Lambda Theta Alpha shall be to provide a sisterhood based on unity, love, and respect. To develop strong leaders who will then provide and practice political, social, and cultural activities. Promote unity through charitable and educational programs. Maintain a higher standard of learning and serve as a voice for all students.  The Gamma Alpha Chapter at UVA was founded in 2001 and is Non-exclusive, as Sisters represent a diverse mix of race, religion, and ethnic backgrounds.

Highlighted Events:

The Cesar Chavez Blood Drive is an annual Blood Drive that our chapter brought to UVA in 2010 and gained university recognition for the high number of participation. We are the first school in the East Coast to host this blood drive celebrating the legacy of this American civil rights leader.

How to find out more:  Interested Ladies Contact Karen Toledo.

LTA WebsiteLTA Facebook | LTA Instagram

Latin American Law Organization (LALO) at the School of Law

Description: The Latin American Law Organization (LALO) was established to represent the views of Latino students at the University of Virginia School of Law; to promote the welfare of its members through educational, professional, cultural and social programs; and to provide a forum for the discussion of local and national issues affecting both the Latino law student community and the University community as a whole.

Highlighted Events:

LALO began a partnership with the Migrant Farmworker Project, a pro bono initiative that enables Spanish speakers within the UVA Law community to assist in protecting migrant farmworkers living in the Charlottesville area. These law students travel to various farmworker camps and speak to the migrant farmworkers in order to provide information about the legal resources available to them and to report any substandard living conditions

How to find out more: If interested in learning more about LALO, please feel free to contact Danielle Moore.


Latin American Student Association (LASA) at Darden

Description: The Latin American Student Association (LASA) is a club that provides students interested in Latin American cultures with a forum to pursue cultural, professional, and social opportunities. We want to foster an environment that encourages an integration between the Latin American students and the rest of the Darden Community. Also, we will support career development opportunities in the US and in Latin America by maintaining and strengthening ties with Latin American alumni.

Highlights: The Darden Global Conference of 2013, where LASA participated with other regional clubs,  brought together special guests including business and political leaders of Latin-America.

How to find out more: To learn more, please contact Diego Gamba.

LASA Website



PorColombia at UVA is the 17th student chapter of the national PorColombiaorganization. Together we strive to establish partnerships and create services that benefit our members and the community as a whole. Therefore, events and initiatives are held nationally and with the organization’s support. PorColombia national offers scholarships and a network of valuable contacts around the world. Members are invited to attend any of the events around the United States and Canada. Additionally, in every chapter we hold a variety of academic, social, philanthropic and cultural events. In particular, PorColombia at UVA is a space to bring ideas and make them happen; an opportunity to gather friends with similar interests to pursue projects while enjoying the process of doing so.

On behalf of PorColombia national, we invite you to join and be part of this group that is open to any student interested and willing to take advantage of such opportunities.

How To Find Out More: To join PorColombia or find out more information, please contact Maria Dominguez.

PorColombia WebsitePorColombia Facebook | PorColombia Twitter

Sigma Lambda Upsilon/Señoritas Latinas Unidas Inc.

Description: Sigma Lambda Upsilon/Señoritas Latinas Unidas Sorority, Inc. highly prides itself as an organization of diverse collegiate and professionally developed women dedicated to uplifting traditionally marginalized groups, especially Latinos and women, by serving as a voice and means for empowerment. The Sorority’s impact can be seen in the outstanding accomplishments of their Hermanas, the young women they have mentored through the LADYS and PEARLS programs, and through the lives of all the people the Sorority has touched via their literacy initiatives. Thus, proving to colleges and communities that women of color can make a difference. Sigma Lambda Upsilon, Latina-based but not Latina-exclusive, has a passion for leading and developing underprivileged communities through the Sorority’s goals of academic excellence, leadership, sisterhood, cultural enrichment, and service to the community and campus. The Alpha Rho Chapter of SLU was established in the Spring of 2013 by four women who found the need for a stronger voice and bigger representation of Latinas and women at the University of Virginia. As Señoritas, we have expanded the Latino community on grounds and continuously display our leadership. We pride ourselves through our goals and ideals as we grow professionally and personally –Hasta La Muerte!

Highlighted Events: SLU is the proud sponsor of our annual National RAICES (Roots); a week long, series of events, which are held nationally during the last week of September. Every chapter participates by hosting a variety of events while promoting and celebrating Latino heritage and culture on their respective campus and/or community. These events are enlightening, thought-provoking and focused on cultural enrichment, women’s issues, community service and scholarship.

How to find out more: For further questions or interest in joining please contact Adriana Suarez or the chapter directly at

SLU WebsiteSLU Facebook | SLU Instagram | SLU Twitter


Student Organization of Caribbean Awareness (SOCA)

Description: The Student Organization of Caribbean Awareness (SOCA) is a culturally based student organization at the University of Virginia. We seek to share the varied and unique cultures of the many nations of the Caribbean and increase awareness of Caribbean societal and political issues through a myriad of activities: cultural, educational, social, and political. We seek to be the avenue through which Caribbean culture is shared with the entire university community and beyond. The Student Organization of Caribbean Awareness welcomes students/faculty of all backgrounds who are interested.

Highlighted Events:

Cultural Explosion Showcase is an event held in the spring to showcase the different cultures present at the university.
The MiniCarnival is the revival of an event once held by the organization. It serves to educate the community about Caribbean culture through food, music, and games.
Caribbean Week is a week designated to promote Caribbean awareness around grounds.

How to find out more: To join SOCA or to learn more, please contact Ismaelia Dejoie.

SOCA WebsiteSOCA Facebook

Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE)

Description:  The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) is a nationwide organization which promotes the involvement and success of Hispanics/Latinos in engineering, science, technology, and math (STEM). We believe SHPE’s role is vital given the national lack of engineers, under representation of Latinos in engineering, and the growing Latino population. The UVA SHPE chapter organizes professional development workshops, academic support programs, community outreach programs, and attends national and regional conferences in an effort to improve the number of Hispanics/Latinos involved in STEM fields.

Highlighted Events:

Juntos Podemos (Together We Can) is a yearly, cost-free, high school outreach program organized by SHPE and held during the Spring Semester. It is a two day program in which high school students learn about engineering and college life in general while staying overnight in the residences of SHPE members. This past year, out of a pool of 170 applicants, 80 students participated in the program.

The UVA SHPE chapter attended the National SHPE Conference held in Cincinnati last October.  During the three day conference, members attended networking events, workshops, competitions, and career fairs organized by SHPE National in addition to touring and eating out in the city. At the conference, the SHPE UVA chapter won best medium sized chapter in the nation for the second consecutive year!

How to find out more:  To join SHPE or to find out more, please contact Jonathan Valenzuela or Mervyn Lopez.

SHPE WebsiteSHPE Facebook | SHPE Twitter

Towards a Better Latin America (TBLA)

Description:  Towards A Better Latin America (TBLA) is an organization that works throughout the year to collect funds for one or two specific projects chosen at the beginning of each year by its members. Founded in 2002, we have worked on different projects in countries such as Ecuador, Peru, Colombia, El Salvador, Cuba and Nicaragua.


Our latest project was to provide all the supplies to build a septic tank in a hospital in the rural areas of Panama.  In the year 2009-2010, we helped a community of women affected by the war in Colombia to build a chicken farm so that they can sustain themselves.  In the year 2008-2009, we provided school supplies and supplies to build a new classroom to a foundation that helps 40 children in Colombia under 15 years old to finish their education. In the academic year of 2006-2007, we sponsored three small projects; we worked with Patch Adams to help build his clinic in El Salvador, fundraised for two Cuban artists to help buy supplies and a computer, and we built a playground and bought sewing machines for a group of women in Nicaragua

How to find out more:  To join TBLA or to learn more, please contact Henrique Sosa Machado.