Edgar M. Vargas Blanco, PhD
Professor Vargas Blanco is the lead Spanish professor at the Community College of Aurora. He holds a Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics from the University of Houston. He has worked as a Spanish and Linguistics instructor in Colombia, France, England, and the United States. He was part of a Fullbright project in Central Asia during summer 2018. His research interests are in sociolinguistics, applied linguistics, Heritage language teaching, and Spanish for specific purposes. His most recent publication is "Linguistic Attitudes of Parents in Colombian and Mexican Families in Houston: A Qualitative Study." He enjoys spending his free time travelling and learning new languages.
Melinda Heiner has taught Spanish for 25 years at both the high school and college level. She has had the pleasure of living for extended periods of time in Spain, Mexico, and Chile. Melinda earned her Master's degree in Spanish Literature from Saint Louis University in Madrid, participated in the Fulbright Program as a teacher in Monterrey, Mexico, and lived in Chile as her husband was a Fulbright participant in Santiago. She constantly used travel not only to practice language but to learn about the people and culture in each country. Her passion is culture and the Spanish language. She loves to cook, read, travel, and spend time with her family.
Maria Luisa Perez-Gonzalez
Perez-Gonzalez is a native of Seville, Spain. She has lived in the United States for fifteen years. During this time she has taught ESL, Spanish, and History from Elementary to College levels. Marisa first came to New Mexico in 1991 while working on a doctorate program on colonial New Mexico for the University of Seville, where she had graduated with a master in History in 1987. From 1992 to 1993 she was a teaching assistant at the University of New Mexico, where she also received intense training on Second Language acquisition. In 2002 she came back to New Mexico as a teacher for Santa Fe Public Schools. Marisa was trained to work with the district ESL population on the most innovative and effective approaches. She became a literacy lead facilitator, and her classroom became a model classroom for the teaching of English as a Second Language. Marisa collaborated with Santa Fe Public Schools and Espanola Public Schools training other teachers on language acquisition best practices. She also taught Method and Materials courses for ESL/bilingual teachers at Northern New Mexico College. Marisa has a passion for Flamenco, which she dances and sings during her free time. She has a multicultural/multilingual family where they speak German, Spanish, English, and Sign Language. She has a chance to test her skills on culture and language acquisition on a daily basis.