The Mesoamerica Center aims to facilitate knowledge, learning and understanding about the ancient indigenous cultures and peoples of what is now Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and El Salvador through education, research, and exchange. The center's primary focus is on the arts, language, and archeology of Mesoamerican civilization. It aims to foster communication among many academic units on campus, highlighting the interdisciplinary strengths of faculty and students at the university. The center also oversees the annual Mesoamerica Meetings (previously The Maya Meetings), a premier academic conference and symposium on Mesoamerican culture, as well as Casa Herrera, a research and teaching facility in the heart of the city of Antigua, Guatemala.
Teotihuacan was an exemplary and archetypal city of ancient Mexico – and a place where art served to bind the diverse population together. While modern city-dwellers recognize its grid and multi-family dwellings as characteristics of our own urban forms, its monumental pyramids and hidden tunnels speak to a different order, drawn from the power of the natural world.