Herman, Nellie

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World Languages Department Chair

BA from Bryn Mawr College
MEd from Antioch NE Graduate School
I am enrolled in Master of Latin program at the University of Florida with an expected date of graduation as Summer 2017.

I always knew I wanted to make a difference in the world. The form this took after my graduation cum laude from Bryn Mawr was to work for peace and community oriented non-profits. However, the work was not hands-on enough for me. I wanted to be the person creating change on the ground floor not the person facilitating the change from the corner office. This led me to pursue the field of education, and Antioch’s innovative, child-centered Master of Education program was the right fit. With two semester-long internships under my belt, I was ready for the classroom, starting off in preschool and graduating to kindergarten, after which I had the pleasure to find Dublin and the final piece of my career puzzle, teaching high school. In my years at Dublin I have taught Algebra I, Spanish I, and all levels of Latin.

What book has made you think the most? In the fall of this year a student in my Latin I class lent me their favorite book, 'Lost to the West: The Forgotten Byzantine Empire that Rescued Western Civilization' by Lars Brownworth (2009). My studies had not previously included the Byzantine Empire and so this book opened up a whole new historical perspective of Christianity, Islam, and Eastern Europe in general. What it did for me personally and professionally was confirm the relevance and value of a classical education in our modern world. Classics is a large window that provides a view of how we got to where we are today.

How would your friends describe you in three words? Kind, Thoughtful, Life-long Learner

What is your favorite course you have taken in high school or college? My favorite course was on the ancient author Curtius Rufus's biography of Alexander the Great, written in Latin. This was a two week intensive course down at Gainesville. It was in the 90s and thunder-storming every day with the air-conditioning making sweaters and hats inside a necessity. Besides the environmental difficulties, there was so much material to translate every day, a presentation and two tests that I thought there would be no way I could succeed. I was pushed to be a more efficient student, to expand my knowledge and hone my translating skills and I learned about a turning point in history that has had ripples throughout my personal and professional life.

What is your favorite place on campus and why? The view east over Crotchet and Pak Monadnock mountain range is my favorite 'place' on campus. It is beautiful and meditative space.

If I had a free afternoon I would... Go for a walk, watch birds, read a book, putter in the yard, try out a new recipe, chat with a friend over tea, explore the world from the perspective of my cats and think about my students and crafting their learning experience.

Del Villar, Bernarda

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M.A Spanish Literature and L.A Studies

I was born in Colombia where I got my B.A in Modern Languages and then a Masters degree in Education. I have been living in the United States now for 9 years and I am every day in love with teaching. I give my students the best not only in the language but in the culture as well.

What book has made you think the most? I have read many books and I love each of them, but definitely I love "One Hundred Years of Solitude" by Colombian writer Gabriel Garcia Marquez. It is a book that makes me understand more the latin american culture, besides it is one of the books that has a little bit of everything: History, humor and love.

What teacher has had the greatest impact on you? Why were they special? Dr. Luis Fernando Restrepo, he was my Colonial Literature 19th century professor, he was a great teacher when I was in grad school. He was an amazing professor who helped me be aware of the richness of the Hispanic culture; thanks to his passion I could better understand my heritage and history.

How would your friends describe you in three words? Loyal, spontaneous and funny.

What is your favorite place on campus and why? The campus is amazing but I think that my favorite place is the place where I will be teaching as it is where my students will get the best of the Spanish language and culture.

I am most happy when... I am with the people I love.


Ortiz, Nicolas

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Universidad de la Frontera

I was born and raised in Temuco, Chile. Temuco is a medium-sized city in the Patagonia region in southern Chile. I moved to the US eleven years ago and lived in Arlington, MA with my wife, Megan, and our two daughters, Juliette and Zoe. I taught AP Spanish Language and AP Spanish Literature at the MATCH charter high school in Boston, MA for ten years. I am very excited to join the team at Dublin to teach Spanish, coach soccer and lead the new Patagonia exchange program. It is very exciting to share my culture and country with Dublin students and facilitate the relationship with our partner schools in Patagonia.

What book has made you think the most? I read the Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao last year and it made me think in a new way about the immigrant experience in the US and how the trauma and history of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic impacted their lives generations after leaving the island. Chile has a similar history with a dictator and oppression and it was interesting to think about it from a new perspective.

What teacher has had the greatest impact on you? Why were they special? I attended a Montessori school in Chile for K-12. It was a small school, a little like Dublin, and I loved it. My favorite teacher was my Biology teacher, Vivian Hassen. She taught me how to be a better student, how to challenge myself and helped me really love learning and school.

How would your friends describe you in three words? funny, happy, grillmaster

What is your favorite course you have taken in high school or college? Anthropology

What is your favorite place on campus and why? I'm just getting to know the campus. I have always wanted to live on a lake and I think the boat house is my favorite spot so far. There is just something about sitting at the water's edge that is so relaxing and peaceful.

I am most happy when... eating delicious food, preferably roast lamb, with my family and friends.

What mistake have you made that ended up leading to a positive outcome? When I entered university after school I thought I wanted to be an engineer and studied engineering for two very long challenging years. I realized I wanted to work with people and not machines and had to start over towards a new degree. I think I gained very valuable life experience and learned many skills about how things work and how to fix things and solve problems even though I did not end up becoming an engineer.

If I had a free afternoon I would... go fishing with friends

What is your favorite outdoor activity? I love fishing, going to the beach and playing soccer.