Page 2 of 8
Alumni News
  • Ashley Brown graduated with degrees in French & Anthropology (2008), after which she received her TEFL certificate. She is currently in South Korea, where she teaches English.
  • Dale Collins

    Dale Collins distinguished himself as one of UT´s finest students while studying for his BA and MA. He graduated with highest honors in Spanish and Portuguese as both an undergraduate (B.A. 1983) and graduate student (M.A. 1986). Dale went on to complete his PhD in Spanish and Portuguese at Indiana University where he graduated in 1993. He was immediately hired as an Assistant Professor at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina, and he had a successful career there until his sudden passing on September 3, 2008. Dale will be remembered for his intelligence, wit, and profound kindness to both friends and strangers.
  • Kesi (Thomas) Garcia (B.A. Spanish 2004) taught Spanish for three years at Gibbs High School and is currently teaching Spanish at Seymour High School and writing a bi-monthly article and blogging for the Knoxville News Sentinel. She also blogs on Latino culture and history for Hispanic Heritage Month and has posted a blog for members of Knoxville's Latino community to share stories of their homelands, culture, etc.
  • Megan Gonzalez (M.A. Spanish 2008) got married this summer and is currently teaching Spanish part- time at ETSU.
  • Bethanie Haynes (B.A. French 2008) was hired as a summer intern at Crawford and Company in the Catastrophe Services Department after her graduation in May. Her internship ended in September, when she traveled to France for an assistantship through the French government to teach English in the small town of Neufchateau, near Germany. After her assistantship, she was invited back to work with Crawford and Company.
  • Travis Lee (B.A. French 2008) reports that he is currently teaching English in Wuhan, China at the Wuhan University of Science and Engineering. According to Travis, “although I have only been here about a week, I like it and encourage others to take time off and go abroad, even if you go to a place where you stand out and don't speak the local language.”
  • Caitie Oyler (B.A. French-Language and World Business 2008) is currently an “assistante d'anglais” at the Lycée Mézeray in Argentan.
  • Lisa Stone (B.A. Spanish, 1996) received her M.S. in Curriculum and Instruction in 1997. Since then, she has been teaching Spanish and is currently in her eighth year at Sevier County High School. She sponsors the Spanish Club at Sevier County, which is active in local service projects for the Hispanic community. Last year the faculty and administration awarded her the honor of SCHS Teacher of the Year. She has led four student trips to Europe (including two London-Paris-Madrid tours) and Costa Rica. Her travels also include summer mission trips to Honduras, Guatemala, and Ecuador, where she serves as youth sponsor and interpreter.
Graduate Student Notes
  • Kodjo Adabra (GTA French) presented a paper on March 8, 2008 at the French Conference of Louisiana State University on the topic: "Anatomie des tenants et aboutissants de la francophonie face à la mondialisation linguistique: le chemin de la survie de la langue française.” In May, he published his second novel, Identité, in France.
Community Outreach
  • Ana Luisa Salinas (Spanish Lecturer) and head of the Cultural Committee of HOLA, helped to organize the HOLA, Hispanic Heritage Festival which was held on September 27 in Knoxville. This was the third year at Market Square Garden, and visitors enjoyed music, food and culture from Spanish speaking countries in addition to other attractions for children and adults. Salinas was in charge of the Parade of Nations, in which more than 15 countries were represented and dressed in their native costumes, and where some performed typical dances from their countries. On October 13, Salinas helped to organize “Meet the Writers,” at Barnes and Noble Bookstore, where Dr. Michael Handelsman, Dr. Nuria Cruz Camara, Dr. Maragarita Merino, and Dr. Gregory Kaplan presented their recently published books.
  • Kimberly Stafford (Spanish Lecturer) organized an event from the ground up to celebrate a couple of dance forms that have been a part of her life for over 30 years. She began clogging professionally when she was five-years-old and has competed and performed all over this country and in Canada. She decided it was time to share her life-long love with Knoxville. She created The Sizzlin' Stomp ( to celebrate her love of dance with other dancers and to give those that have never danced the opportunity to learn from some of the best instructors in the US and Canada. Her current task is fundraising. She is accepting donations, holding a couple of contests on her website and attempting to solicit sponsorship and support from local merchants/vendors.
Spotlight on Technology
  • Submitted by Dolly Young (Professor of Spanish), Doug Canfield (Coordinator, Language Resource Center) Second Life is a virtual environment that can potentially engage learners in tasks that require them to use the FL for a specific purpose, such as shopping at a grocery store with a classmate and keeping within a specific budget, meeting a fellow avatar in a university building and interviewing him/her, exploring a town and designing an agenda for two based on shared interests and what the town can offer. With this in mind, Dr. Dolly Young and Doug Canfield, Coordinator of the LRC, received a RITE grant from ITC to support a pilot study in the spring of 2008. The grant permitted the university to purchase a small plot of land in Second Life. In the spring of 2008, four SL Tasks were integrated into the first-year curriculum of six sections of Intensive Spanish 111-112. Doug Canfield wrote a Second Life manual for instructors and students and designed the virtual auditorium, office space and transporting area in SL. Harriette Spiegel created an in-world audiovisual orientation to each task. Dr. Dolly Young, with feedback from the 111-112 instructors, Alejandra Galindo, Kathy Knight and Patricia Harriman, designed the four tasks. The design criteria for the tasks included ensuring that the task:
    1. had a problem-solving element
    2. was interactive (students had to use Spanish to express themselves orally or in writing)
    3. was collaborative (students had to depend on each other to complete aspects of the task)
    4. had a specific purpose
    5. included an accountability component (some aspect of the task had to be submitted to their instructor)
    After finishing each task, students completed a questionnaire to gauge their immediate perceptions of the task. At the end of the semester, students completed a 40-item Likert scale questionnaire. In addition, instructors offered written feedback after the tasks. An analysis of the data indicated that as long as the technological aspects functioned well, students found SL motivating, engaging and beneficial to language learning.
Message from the Head of the Department | Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4 | Page 5 | Page 6 | Page 7 | Page 8 | Friends of MFLL [PDF]