Trans-Border Opportunities Certificate

The Border Beyond the Headlines

Too frequently, the U.S.-Mexico border is framed as a dead zone, a breeding ground for crisis and tragedy, and a symbol of political division. Yet the border is a vibrant space, a source of boundless creativity and hope, and a vital economic hub. Reframing the border as an opportunity rather than a threat, building bridges not barriers, and engaging with the region’s economic and cultural possibilities requires a new set of knowledge and skills. The Kroc School’s Trans-Border Opportunities Certificate Program prepares working professionals, students, and aspiring civic leaders to help shape the future of the border region.

Participants in the certificate will learn to identify unique possibilities for business, entrepreneurship, activism, and public problem-solving presented by the border environment. Structured in five modules highlighting politics, people, products, places, and culture in the border region, students will gain substantive knowledge about a range of border issues.

Interactive evening and weekend seminars will teach key border-related skills including awareness of relevant data and information sources, provide contact with local leaders and decision makers, and offer an understanding of the spatial dynamics of the border region.

Taught by Trans-Border Institute staff and featuring exciting guest speakers who are regionally and nationally known experts and practitioners, students will interact with those who best understand the border and are on the front lines of shaping its future.

How it Works:
To earn the certificate, participants will complete a minimum of 5 classroom seminars of their choice, one from each thematic module (politics, people, products, places, and culture), and 3 field seminars from any of the modules. Participants in the certificate program may take additional classroom seminars at no additional cost, as well as additional field seminars for a nominal fee.

Full Certificate: $1,800*
Early Enrollment: $1,700* (enroll by June 14)

30% discount available for NGOs and University of San Diego students and alumni. Contact for your promo code.

*Meals included

Enroll Today to Take Advantage of the Early Enrollment Discount

Summer 2017 Schedule


July 12: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

Immigration and Politics in the United States

Greg Prieto, USD

Tom Wong, UCSD


July 19: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

All Politics is Local: Cross-Border Stakeholders and Political Culture

Denise Ducheny, Fmr. State Senator

José Larroque, Baker McKenzie


July 29: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

The Otay Mesa Border Crossing and the Cross-Border Xpress



July 26: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

Invisible and Indispensable: Mexican Migrants and the U.S. Economy

Leo Chávez, UCI


July 22: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

On the Frontlines of a Humanitarian Crisis: Migrant Shelters in Tijuana


August 2: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

Supply Chains, the Innovation Economy, and the Cross-Border Boom

Don José Galicot, Tijuana Innovadora


August 5: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

Visit to Tijuana Call-Center and Electronics Manufacturing Hub


August 9: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

The Other Supply Chain: Understanding the Cross-Border Drug War




August 12: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

Urban Planning 2.0: Visit to the Escuela Libre de Arquitectura and downtown Tijuana


August 16: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

Hipster Visionaries: Re-Building Tijuana’s Zona Norte

Miguel Marshall, Centro Ventures


8/23 Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

The Perils of Progress in Greater California: The Cross-Border Water Crisis

Kristen Goodrich, Tijuana River National Estuarine Research Reserve




August 19: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

The Border Crossed Us: Barrio Logan Walking Tour


August 26: Field Seminar (9:00 AM - 5:00 PM)

Visit to a series of art co-ops in Tijuana, and the Centro Cultural Tijuana


August 30: Classroom Seminar (5:30 PM - 9:30 PM)

Border Vogue: Hybrid Styles, Tastes, and Traditions