Falcutad y Asistentes


This year will be my third consecutive year participating in the Spanish Academy, first as a Teacher, then as a Lead Teacher and now as the Spanish Academy Director. I am currently a Spanish teacher at Freedom High School in Woodbridge. I have been teaching Spanish as a first and second language for 9 years and have taught English for adults for over 5 years. I was born and raised in Panama City, Panama and migrated to the US in 2006. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing from the Inter American University of Panama and a Master Degree in Arts of Teaching with Emphasis in Teacher Leadership from Grand Canyon University. I am also a Certified Spanish Interpreter and Translator.

Currently, I am the Advocacy Chair of FLAVA (Foreign Language Association of Virginia) and have been recognized for her excellent presentations at the State Foreign Language Conference.

Participating in the Governor’s School Spanish Academy have been one of the highlights of my professional career since I am passionate about teaching my language and culture. My goal is to offer students an unforgettable and meaningful experience that will greatly impact their professional and personal plans.


I am Dr. Gustavo E. Tisera (D.V.M., M.Ed.). I have held a doctorate degree from the National University of La Plata (Argentina) since the year 1981, Master in education from J.M.U. and Master in Education from Salamanca University (Spain) since 2016. I was also an army officer for the Argentina Cavalry and I was a professor at the Faculty of Veterinary Tandil (BA, Argentina).

I am from Argentina and have been living in America since the year 2000. I became a US citizen in the year 2011. I am starting ten years at Wakefield Country Day School. I began by teaching 4thgrade and up. Now I teach Spanish I, II, III, Pre-AP, AP, and am coach of the varsity soccer teams for the boys and girls.  I have four children and three grandchildren.


My name is Sandra Rodriguez, I was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia. I majored in Social Sciences at the District University of Bogotá and have worked as a primary, secondary and university level teacher in Colombia. I completed a master’s degree in Spanish Language and Culture at the University of Salamanca in Spain. I have been teaching Spanish as a second language in Georgia for 9 years. My passions are teaching and traveling.


My name is Vicente Colon.  I was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico and moved to Virginia about a decade ago. I hold degrees from the University of Puerto Rico and have experience teaching Spanish and Business Law. I am delighted to return to the Spanish Academy. I love art, nature and reading.


My name is Edwin Escorcia and I am from Colombia. I hold a B.A.  in Spanish and Foreign Languages from Universidad Pedagógica Nacional located in Bogotá, Colombia. I have been teaching foreign languages for nineteen years. I taught French and English as foreign languages in Colombia for ten years, and I have been teaching Spanish for the last nine years in the state of Virginia (Loudoun County Public Schools and Prince William County Schools).  In my free time, I am a Zumba instructor. I have been a certified dance instructor since 2011.


My name is Sidney M. Mangual Cruz. I was born and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico. I moved to Virginia when I was twelve. I graduated from George Mason University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish and Global Affairs in 2012. I graduated from the University of Mary Washington with a Masters in Foreign Language Education in 2014. I been teaching Spanish at the high school level since 2012. Teaching is my passion and dedication.











Hola. My name is Brandon Norris. I graduated from the University of Virginia in 2016 with a major in Spanish and Foreign Affairs, and I now have the privilege of teaching Spanish at Short Pump Middle School in Richmond, Virginia. I attended the Spanish academy as a student in 2011 and returned to the Academy as an RA last year. I am fascinated by all languages and enjoy spending my time sipping coffee while conversing or reading in Spanish, French, and German, or trying my hand at a new language.











Hello, my name is Allison Frasca. I’m a rising fourth year at the University of Virginia where I’m double majoring in Spanish and Global Security and Justice, with a minor in politics. Around grounds, I’m involved in a sorority, the Cavalier Marching Band, and a migrant aid volunteering program. I attended the Spanish Academy in 2012 and returned as an RA in 2016.​I’m thrilled to be back yet again for another fantastic three weeks!












My name is Meghan Depue, a rising third-year student at the University of Virginia studying Spanish and Elementary Education. At UVA, I enjoy tutoring, singing, and working as a substitute teacher in Charlottesville City Schools, and this past semester I had the incredible experience of studying abroad in Valencia, Spain. After attending the academy as a student in 2014 and working as a Resident Assistant last year, I could not be more excited to be returning!















  I’m Monica Maher, a rising sophomore at the College of William & Mary, intending to major in Linguistics. My love of languages began with Polish, which I learned growing up in a bilingual household, and being already conversational in two languages made it easier for me to learn a third when I was given the opportunity to start Spanish. Along with perfecting my current languages and learning as many more as is feasible, I intend to travel as much as possible while I still have the freedom to do so. Most recently, I went to Iceland with a group of friends, and would highly recommend the destination to anyone looking for stunning views or unique natural wonders. I also attended the Governor’s Academy for Spanish Language in its 2015 session, and thoroughly enjoyed it — enough to come back as an RA — and I am very much looking forward to another unforgettable summer! 












¡Hola a todos! My name is Majo Bustamante and I am from Costa Rica.  I’m studying Strategic Communications and Philosophy in Washington and Lee University.  I’m currently studying in Rome during this semester learning Italian and next semester I will be in Paris, learning French.  As you can tell I enjoy travelling and learning new languages.  I’m very happy to return to La Academia for second year in a row and I can’t wait to meet you all. 















¡Hola a todos! My name is Marc Gehlsen and I’m a recent graduate of the University of Mary Washington with Bachelors of Arts in Spanish and Linguistics. I was a Washington Tour Guide all four years, leading tours primarily in English but sometimes in Spanish, I studied abroad in Spain for two weeks on an undergraduate research voyage, and I wrote my senior thesis on language and identity. You can never catch me without a cup of coffee in my hand or a witty joke waiting to be told, and I can’t wait to meet everyone!