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Latin America Staff in Chile


Jeffrey Lee Stevenson

Associate Professor and Director of the C.V. Starr-Middlebury School in Latin America, Chile
M.A., Ph.D., Linguistics, University of Washington

Jeff started his career in international education interning with Food for the Hungry in La Paz, Bolivia in 1989 where he collaborated in health education/prevention programs among the Aymara of the Bolivian Altiplano. In 1990 he moved to Santiago, Chile where he lived for five years. In Chile, he first worked with Youth with a Mission and then taught English at the Instituto Chileno-Norteamericano de Cultura. After finishing an M.A. in TESOL from Central Washington University in 1996, he taught English for three years in Tokyo, Japan at Asia University. In 1999, he returned to his native state of Washington where he completed an M.A. in Romance Language Linguistics and a PhD in Linguistics at the University of Washington. Before accepting his current position of Director of the Middlebury School in Latin America (Chile and Mexico), Jeff was a member of the faculty of Seattle Pacific University where he coordinated a study abroad/service learning trip to Santiago, Chile and taught Spanish and graduate-level courses in Second Language Acquisition and Sociolinguistics. Of his love for Latin American cultures he states, “I went to Chile in 1990 with a 10-month plane ticket and stayed for five years.” He is passionate about helping students gain the second language and cross-cultural competence that will allow them to make significant contributions as global citizens.



Pamela Figueroa Silva

Project Coordinator of the C.V. Starr-Middlebury School in Latin America, Chile
B.A. Graphic Design, Universidad Católica de Valparaíso

Pamela studied Graphic Design at the Universidad Católica de Valparaíso, where she was also a T.A. Later she taught design software to designers, publishers and other related professionals for a certificate program at the Universidad Gabriela Mistral. She has 10 years of experience in the publishing sector as a designer, marketing chief and product manager. As project coordinator for the program, she researches and supervises housing and internship placements, organizes field trips, extracurricular and program-sponsored activities and coordinates program orientations.


Juan Pastene

Assistant to the Director, and Course Coordinator and Instructor for the Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competency Course
M.A., Communications, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso

Juan is Professor of Writing at Adolfo Ibañez University at Viña del Mar in the Journalism major. Furthermore, he teaches both a course and a workshop of Communication in the M.A. in Public Administration at the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaíso (PUCV). He has also worked for the Middlebury program in Chile since its beginnings as professor of the Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competence course. He is a Spanish Teacher and Journalist from Playa Ancha University, where he began his academic career. He has obtained an M.A. in Communications from the PUCV, and has studied at SUNY-Plattsburgh and McGill University as well. Critical discourse analysis, transnationalism and hegemony are among Juan’s academic interests.


Víctor Hugo Ramírez

Assessment Specialist for the Cuaderno Course, C.V. Starr-Middlebury School in Latin America, Chile
M.A., Education, Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey.

Victor started his teaching career at the Puerto Vallarta branch of the University of Guadalajara’s Centro para Estudiantes Extranjeros in 1998. In 2003 he joined the Universidad Veracruzana’s teaching staff and also became coordinator of the U.S. Studies Program.  He was also a member of several selection committees for study abroad and organized field trips for Universidad Veracruzana (UV) students visiting American universities.  In 2010 Victor joined the UV’s Department for Academic Development of ELE (Spanish as a Foreign Language) and has been participating in different curriculum development projects such as the design of ECELE -the official certification exam of the Mexican government for Spanish as a Foreign Language.  Since 2011, Victor has been working with students taking the Cuaderno course in Chile.  Victor graduated from the UV and has a double major in English and French. He also holds a B.A. in International Relations from El Colegio de México and an M.A. in Education with a thesis on Curriculum Design of ELE from the Tec de Monterrey.


Patty Duffy

Instructor, Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competency (Santiago)
Ph.D., Linguistics, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Patricia Baeza Duffy is Professor of Spanish for Foreigners at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. She holds a Ph.D. in Linguistics. Her interests include critical analysis and multimodal discourse, systemic functional linguistics and educational linguistics, especially in regard to the teaching of Spanish as a Second Language. Her doctoral thesis focused on the discursive construction of narratives about the last Chilean dictatorship and reports on the violation of human rights in that historical period. She has recently published articles on this topic as well as on intersemiotically constructed valuation prosodies in film, such as The Reconstruction of Memory in 'La Hija del General,' Sang Woo and his Grandmother: A Meeting of Two Worlds in Korean Cinema, among others.

Yasna Roldán Valderrama

Instructor, Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competency (Valdivia)
Ph.D., Literature & Linguistics, Universidad Austral de Chile
Yasna Roldán Valderrama is a Professor of Spanish at the Universidad Austral de Chile. She holds an M.A. in Linguistics and Literature from the University of Concepción and a Ph.D. in Literature and Linguistics from the Universidad Austral de Chile. She was a fellow of the National Commission for Scientific and Technological Research (CONICYT) during her Master’s studies and a fellow of the EU-ALFA Lentisco Academy Training Project at the University of Roskilde in Denmark. Her recent research areas include Critical Discourse Studies, Systemic Functional Linguistics and social representations in presidential speech. As an instructor at the Language Center of the Department of Philosophy and Humanities at the Universidad Austral de Chile she has taught courses that develop production and comprehension of academic texts published in this field and coauthored the book Theory and Practice of Academic Writing: Guidelines for the Production and Evaluation of an Academic Report.

Aldo OLate Vinet

Instructor, Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competency (Temuco)
Ph. D., Linguistics, Universidad de La Frontera

Aldo Olate is a professor of linguistics in the Universidad de La Frontera, Temuco, Chile. He teaches Spanish grammar and other courses to Spanish teaching students and speech therapy students. He holds a Ph D in Linguistics. His interest includes the linguistics and communicative competence of the Spanish spoken by mapuches, language contact and grammaticalization, and interaction between the Spanish and Mapudungun in rural contexts. On this area he has many articles including: “Cambio linguistico y contacto de lenguas.Nuevas miradas e interpretaciones en torno al castellano de America”, “Interactividad linguistica castellano/Mapudungun de una comunidad rural bilingue”. His doctoral thesis focused on the linguistics and communicative competence of Spanish spoken by mapuche children, it describes the cohesion in the narrative text and the lexical and syntactics competence of children. He is currently working on two investigation project. The first one is about the use and interaction of the Spanish and Mapudungun in rural contexts, and the second is about the contact at grammatical level in the Spanish spoken by mapuche bilinguals.


Marco Rosales Tapia

Instructor, Writing for Linguistic and Cultural Competency (Valparaíso)
M.A., Communication and Journalism, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso

Marco Rosales Tapia is a Spanish Teacher with a Bachelor Degree in Education at the Playa Ancha University. He has a Master Degree in Communication and Journalism at the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaiso. He has obtained the "Assignment of Educational Excellence" and the "Directors of Excellence" scholarship, both granted by the Chilean Department of Education. Nowadays, he teaches at both the secondary and university level. His topics of interest include reading and writing with youth and adults, media and communication in organizations, and leadership in educational institutions, which he has developed in his classes, specializations, research and publications.