Julie De Alba
Higher Ed Regional Manager, Central
My love of language and culture started in middle school when I had Señor Álvarez, a Cuban immigrant and teacher known for his strictness in the classroom and in grading Spanish assignments. The high bar he set appealed to me as a student, and the rhythm and structure of the Spanish language ignited in me a passion for language learning that I thought would be unmatched. I was wrong, because in my small rural high school the very next year, I met Señorita Wampole, who took me through four years of high school Spanish and fueled the flame of passion not only for the language, but for culture as well. I was hooked!
In college I double majored in Spanish and Education. I had incredible experiences with study abroad and attended university in both Oviedo and Sevilla, Spain. Living in another culture is an experience I believe every person should have if possible. It is eye-opening as one learns that people are different and yet similar in so many ways. I will cherish those memories always.
It is a joy to now work with educators all over the country and support them as they share with students the knowledge of, and experiences with, other languages and cultures. The goal of turning language learners into language lovers is both admirable and important in the building of global citizenship.