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CEA CAPA Barcelona, Spain Directory

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Barcelona, Spain Leadership

Enric Figueras
Vice President of Regional Programs

As Vice President, Spain, Mr. Figueras establishes a country strategy to ensure consistency among all sites, and to lead and support all program development initiatives geared toward enhancing quality. Mr. Figueras also monitors the academic standards of our programs and ensures that CEA CAPA policies are in place to serve the CEA CAPA community and deliver study abroad programs of quality and rigor.

Mr. Figueras has over 10 years of experience in the field of academia. Before joining CEA CAPA, he taught at Boise State University (Idaho), where he created an online language teaching program, developed Spanish course curriculum in the fields of Spanish Linguistics and Spanish for Heritage Learners, coordinated the Spanish Language Program, and served as the Director of the Undergraduate Spanish Program. Mr. Figueras also contributed to the development of a variety of teaching tools for various U.S. publishing companies, including two published workbook manuals for U.S. college students.

Mr. Figueras sees study abroad as a magnificent opportunity for personal growth and development, alongside academic advancement. Exploring new horizons not only opens doors to new ideas and views, but also helps you calibrate your potential and abilities in a new environment. This experience supports the development of a lifelong set of skills highly transferable to the personal and professional arenas.

Mr. Figueras holds an Executive MBA from La Salle (Universitat Ramon Llull, Spain), a master's in Spanish from Middlebury College (Vt.), and a bachelor's in Communications/Journalism from Boise State University (Idaho). He is trilingual in English, Spanish, and Catalan, has extensive knowledge of Portuguese, and working knowledge of French.

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Laura Salvadó
Senior Director of Global Operations

Laura's role is to provide leadership to the Student Support team at CEA CAPA Barcelona. She is responsible for management of staffing, financial logistics, student services, students accommodation, and Health & Safety issues.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Laura coordinated European Language Exchange Programs in both Barcelona and London, working to offer accommodation and cultural activities to language students. Laura holds a Bachelor Degree in Psychology from the University of Middlesex in London and has over 15 years of experience in the study abroad field, with extensive expertise in the planning, execution, and delivery of student services.

Originally from Barcelona, Laura has extensively travelled around Spain, Europe and the U.S. She speaks Catalan, Spanish, and English. Laura firmly believes that traveling and study abroad are the best ways to expand and invigorate one's mind. She loves the fact that her job contributes to students' personal growth and to a better global cultural understanding.

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Santi Alias
Program Director, Barcelona
Santi began his professional career combining his studies in Translation and Interpreting and Educational Sciences at UAB with organizing programs abroad for Spanish students. Later, he worked as director of UAB Languages Barcelona. He developed his professional career as director of these programs for over 10 years. During the many challenges faced during this stage, he learned how to recognize the relevance of the intercultural competences of students who travel to Spain to carry out study abroad programs.
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Ana Martínez, PhD
Academic Director

Ana's role is to ensure the academic quality of all CEA CAPA Barcelona programs. She reviews the curriculum and coordinates the development of new courses, reviews and maintains consistency of academic policies and practices, oversees the resolution of all important student academic issues, and provides support to faculty to guarantee academic excellence.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Ana worked with another study abroad organization as a resident coordinator and faculty member. She's also held several university positions: Assistant Director of the Advanced Spanish Language Program at Georgetown University (Washington D.C.), Teaching Associate at Georgetown University and Universidad Antonio de Nebrija (Spain), and Teaching Assistant and Director of the Spanish House at Middlebury College (Vt.). Ana earned her Ph.D. in Spanish Applied Linguistics at Georgetown University, which also conferred to her a Master of Science in Linguistics. She also holds a Master of Arts in Teaching Spanish as a Second Language from Universidad Antonio de Nebrija and a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Philology from Universidad Complutense de Madrid (Spain).

Ana first travelled to Dublin, Ireland in high school and subsequently studied in London for four months. She also spent her senior year of college studying in Pisa, Italy and completed her graduate studies in Washington, D.C. She loves traveling and believes that understanding the world from different perspectives is the one of the most enriching lessons that students can learn while living abroad.

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Barcelona, Spain Team

Agustina Balacco
Assistant Program Administrator
Agustina Balacco serves as the Assistant Program Administrator at CEA CAPA Barcelona.
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Alba Segovia
Career & Internship Coordinator

Alba Segovia is a Career & Internship Coordinator at CEA CAPA Barcelona.

 
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Albert Martí
Infrastructure Manager

Albert Martí is the Infrastructure Manager.

 
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Anna Labay
Housing Advisor

Anna assists in all aspects of students’ lodging: housing search, maintenance issues, custom service and student support. She also leads and accompanies students during Academic and Cultural Activities and excursions.

Anna was born in Barcelona, earned a degree in tourism through the University of Girona, and speaks Catalan, Spanish, and English.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Anna was the operations manager in a company that manages different lines of business as touristic apartments, a hotel boutique and residences for students and digital nomads located in Barcelona and Pamplona, on some occasions, Anna stayed in the residence of Pamplona working from there and sharing time with students from around the world and the study abroad experience with them.

She has also worked as a group leader for language students in Ireland and England and it was there where she discovered her passion for study abroad.

Anna enjoys surfing and trekking and has traveled around Europe and the United States.

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Bárbara Rubio
Senior Career & Internship Coordinator

Bárbara Rubio is the Senior Career & Internship Coordinator at CEA CAPA Barcelona.

 
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Beatriz Rovira
Housing Advisor

Bea is responsible for creating the best experience for CEA CAPA students while in Barcelona. As part of the Student Support Team, she focuses on student accommodation, ensuring the commitment and enthusiasm of our host families as well as the quality and suitability of our apartments and residencias. Bea provides students with the assistance and guidance they need to become familiar with their new surroundings and adapt to life within a new community.

Bea earned a degree in tourism through the University of Barcelona. She has worked in a holiday apartment company and participated in internships in the hotel industry in Barcelona and in the Costa Brava in Girona, and as the coordinator for summer programs for international students in Barcelona. She has also organized academic year programs and summer camps abroad for Catalan students, mainly in the U.S., England, and Ireland.

After her positive experience abroad in a boarding school in Ireland, Bea recommends students be open to a different culture and gain the most of the each unique moment.

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Belén Gómez
On-Call Assistant
Belén Gómez serves as an On-Call Assistant at CEA CAPA Barcelona.
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Blanca Alvarez
Senior Academic Advisor

As a Senior Academic Advisor, Blanca works across different fields at CEA CAPA, including academic administration, teaching Spanish, and coordinating cultural activities. The combination of these three things allows Blanca to explore and develop her main passions: culture, arts, and languages.

Blanca was born in Salamanca, Spain, where she graduated from the University of Salamanca in English Philology and Art History. After finishing her degrees, she decided to pursue her education in Barcelona, where she earned a master’s degree in Art and New Media Curatorship at ESDI (Barcelona), qualification issued by Ramon Llull University.

Before Blanca joined CEA CAPA, she worked freelance in the cultural world for institutions such as Arts Santa Monica (Barcelona) and in the studio of the international artist Antoni Muntadas. She also taught Spanish to foreigners and designed cultural activities to connect them to the Spanish culture.

Her main interests lie in all the expressions of the artistic and cultural world, reading, cinema, and travelling around the world, when she has the chance. She also likes to design and curate art exhibitions, a hobby she combines with her present job.

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Carla Sevilla
Senior Experiential Learning Advisor

Carla joined the CEA CAPA Barcelona Academic team as a Senior Experiential Learning Advisor in November 2022. She oversees day-to-day academic matters and coordinates the Volunteering Program. Additionally, she coordinates large university cohorts, providing academic advising and general assistance. She is the advisor for students taking UPF (Universitat Pompeu Fabra) courses, (International Business Program and Interdisciplinary Studies).

Carla was born in Valencia, and graduated from the University of Valencia with a degree in Art History. She speaks Spanish, Catalan, English, and Italian. After completing her degree, Carla moved to London, where she worked in the tourism industry for five years. In 2007, she moved to Barcelona and continued her work in tourism, organizing trips for groups from the U.S. to Europe. In 2009, Carla transitioned to international education, and in 2013, she moved to Madrid to take on the role of International Academic Program Director at ITEA Idiomas. She ran the Academic Year for students from Spain going for an academic year to the US, Canada, Ireland, and the UK. She then returned to Barcelona to join CEA CAPA.

Carla loves languages and cultures and she is an avid traveler who enjoys exploring new destinations. Her interests also include visiting exhibitions and museums, literature, cinema, and music, and she is passionate about the arts.

 


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Carlota Anglada
Housing Advisor
Carlota Anglada serves as a Housing Advisor at CEA CAPA Barcelona.
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Cristina González
Student Affairs Advisor

In her role as Student Affairs Advisor at CEA CAPA Barcelona, Cris ensures the health, safety, and well-being of students. With a background in psychology and victimological intervention, Cris is known for her empathetic nature and active listening skills, fostering an environment where students can feel supported.

Cris collaborates closely with her Student Support team colleagues, ensuring effective communication to tailor students' experiences in Barcelona. By prioritizing personalized support and collaboration, Cris aims to create an inclusive environment where every student feels valued and empowered to express themselves.

Her personal values emphasize inclusivity and multiculturalism, aligning with her commitment to creating a society where everyone can freely express themselves. Through her dedication to these values and her commitment to student well-being, Cris contributes to a positive and enriching educational experience at CEA CAPA Barcelona.

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Elena Merino, PhD
Academic Advisor
Elena holds a bachelor’s degree in English philology, complemented by a master's degree in TESOL and a master's degree in linguistics and technological applications. She also earned a PhD from Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Linguistic Communication and Multilingual Medication, focusing her research on discourse and language learning. She has extensive experience as a teacher, both face-to-face and online, in different educational settings and primarily with teenagers and adult students. She also possesses extensive experience in teacher training, specializing in various methodologies, course planning, and classroom dynamics. 
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Elisenda Figuerola
Career & Internship Coordinator

Elisa (Eli) ensures the good process of the daily operations related to the internship program, and supports faculty and students in academic and administrative matters. She started working for CEA CAPA in 2016 as Student Services Advisor and focused on the organization of the Academic-Integrated Cultural Activities Program (AICAP) until 2021.

Eli majored in History from the University of Barcelona and was lucky enough to study abroad in Lyons, France as an undergraduate student. After college, she lived in Santa Cruz, California, for a few months before pursuing her Master's in International Studies at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (Fundació CIDOB). Eli started working in the International Higher Education field in 2013 working for a study abroad organization that gave her the opportunity to move to Colorado where she stayed for over 2 years teaching Spanish as a second language. Eli is fluent in four languages and in her free time, enjoys running in Collserola and watching movies with her friends at home.

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Estíbaliz Rodríguez
Student Affairs Advisor
Estíbaliz's responsibilities encompass a diverse range of tasks, including navigating immigration matters, addressing the day-to-day health and safety requirements of students, and overseeing the logistics of homestay arrangements to ensure an excellent familial environment for students.

With a degree in English Philology, Estíbaliz embarked on a transformative journey to Dublin, Ireland, where she resided and worked for a year. Prior to joining CEA CAPA, she served as a school director at an English academy, where she solidified her commitment to nurturing a safe and supportive educational environment.

With her background in education, Estíbaliz excels in ensuring the well-being of students while fostering strong relationships between local families and incoming students.
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Gemma Aguilà
Student Services Advisor & Custom Progams Coordinator

Gemma Aguilà Calbet is a Student Services Advisor and Custom Program Coordinator in the CEA CAPA Barcelona Center. Together with the global custom programs team, she works on the preparation and arrangement of these programs to tailor them to institutions’ needs, and operates the logistics on-site to make them happen and succeed. Gemma also works to enhance students' engagement and experience with local culture and history. She holds master’s degrees in museology and cultural tourism.

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Iban Grimal
Senior Academic Advisor

Following six years of professional experience in Berlin, Iban returned to Barcelona, his hometown, to work at the international design institution, IED Barcelona. His educational pursuits include advertising & PR at Universitat de Girona, journalism at Universitat Pompeu Fabra, and more recently, Gestalt therapy. This diverse background enriches his approach to education and personal development.



 
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Ingrid Mobley
Global Operations Administrator

Ingrid Mobley is the Global Operations Administrator.

 
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Laura Rovira
Assistant Program Director, Student Affairs
Laura’s role is to oversee and coordinate all aspects of the CEA CAPA Barcelona Student Services and Custom Program teams, including logistics and operations, crisis management, health & safety protocols, and services, student advising, cultural engagement programming, student housing, and advising on custom program development.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Laura taught English to speakers of other languages and worked in tourism, high fashion, and international travel and education. Laura holds an M.B.A. in Strategic Management of Events and Protocol and a B.A. in Applied Language in English and French from Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona. She is a native speaker of Catalan and Spanish, speaks fluent English, and has varying levels of French, Italian, and Mandarin. She studied abroad in Canada and the United Kingdom, which is why she strongly believes in the importance of living abroad when it comes to personal growth. These experiences give her insight into the challenges that come with studying abroad, and how to overcome problems and build resilience.
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Lauren Spalding
Student Affairs Advisor

Lauren works with students on their day-to-day health and safety needs. As an Oregonian transplanted to Spain she brings a unique perspective to her role, helping students navigate cultural differences and overcome the common challenges they face while studying in Barcelona.

Lauren holds a double degree in Human Services and International Studies from Oregon State University. Her international experience includes time spent living and working in both Ecuador and Argentina. Prior to working with CEA CAPA she worked as an English teacher for Spanish speakers. She is passionate about fostering a welcoming environment for all students and supporting them through their journey of studying abroad.

 
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Maca Algorta
Student Services Advisor
Maca has worked across a range of sectors including Customer Services, Sales, and Digital Marketing. Most recently she studied to become an expert in Systemic Therapy. Macarena has international experience developing Customer Services functions and delivers a true memorable experience to both the business and customers. Originally from Uruguay, she loves having a healthy lifestyle in contact with nature, running, reading, and travelling. 
 
 
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Magalí González
Housing Coordinator

Magalí González brings a wealth of international experiences and a diverse skillset to her role. Her journey into global exploration began at the age of eight, when her family relocated to another country with a different language, igniting her curiosity for different cultures. 

Magalí's formal study abroad experience took her to Rimini, Italy, during her bachelor's degree program at the Questrom School of Business at Boston University. Since then, she has called nine cities across three continents home, immersing herself in various environments and mastering multiple languages. Fluent in Spanish, English, and Portuguese, with conversational abilities in Italian and German, Magalí effortlessly navigates multicultural settings and advocates for open-mindedness and embraces diverse perspectives.  

Her professional journey spans several industries, including hospitality at Club Med, travel retail at L'Oreal, and financial services, where she developed as a team leader at mid-sized firms. Alongside her corporate roles, Magalí has pursued entrepreneurial ventures. In her recent decade in Barcelona, she's developed a passion for interior design, property development, and real estate. During this time, Magalí earned a master's in interior architectural design at Barcelona Tech and worked independently in these fields. 

Outside of work, Magalí finds joy in diverse culinary experiences, team sports, skiing, scuba diving, horse riding, and dancing. With her dynamic background and enthusiasm for cultural exchange, Magalí is excited to contribute to the vibrant international community at CEA CAPA Barcelona.

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Marc Arnas
Senior Internship Manager

Marc Arnas is the Senior Internship Manager at CEA CAPA Barcelona.

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Marlene Kohl
On-Call Assistant

Marlene Kohl is an On-Call Assistant at CEA CAPA Barcelona. 

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Mónica Rodriguez
Senior Program Administrator

As part of the Student Support Team, Mónica's role is to oversee and coordinate all logistics related to Student Services. She focuses on health and safety issues, acts as procedures and Health Services liaison, contributes to the organization and operation of student arrival and orientation, and to the execution and continuous improvement of the Academic-Integrated Cultural Activities (AICAP) program. By creating initiatives to facilitate global competence and personal growth, Mónica works to ensure CEA CAPA students receive the quality assistance and guidance they need to make the most of their experience abroad.

Born in Barcelona, Mónica has spent time in England, France, and Morocco. While still in school, Mónica spent some months as a hotel trainee in Paris and rural England. It was here she discovered her love of travel and meeting people from different places. After finishing her studies, she worked in London's hotel industry. As a result of her interest in other cultures, she lived for a while in Fès (Morocco) doing volunteer work and learning about the Moroccan culture, language, and way of life. When she came back to Barcelona, Mónica worked as a group organizer and tour leader for incoming travel agencies.

Mónica earned a Tourism Degree at the University of Girona. She speaks Spanish, Catalan, English, and French.

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Nadia Alami
Student Services Advisor
Nadia holds a degree in English and French philology from the Autonomous University of Barcelona, specializing in linguistics, and obtained a master’s in teaching foreign languages. During her academic journey, she immersed herself in French culture during a six-month study abroad program, gaining valuable insights into the challenges faced when studying abroad and developing strategies to overcome them. She then began her working career teaching English in local schools in Barcelona.

At CEA CAPA Barcelona, Nadia works on the preparation of and logistics for the activities and trips for the program, ensuring seamless logistics. Her responsibilities include providing students with local recommendations, addressing their concerns promptly, and ensuring that students have a rich and immersive experience abroad and feel supported. She is also responsible for the organization of students’ arrival, for cultural initiatives, and is the marketing liaison for the Barcelona team.
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Patricia Palacios
Student Services Advisor
Patricia is an English Philologist specializing in Language Teaching for Foreigners, with her final dissertation focusing on intercultural competence. She started her professional career teaching English to locals of different ages and Spanish to foreigners in different language schools in Barcelona, her home city, for seven years. She combined this work with her studies and a stay in Ireland for an academic year as a Spanish Teacher Assistant. Later, she changed careers and countries and worked in hospitality and tourism in Australia for three years. There, she realized the popularity of student agencies for foreign students of English and she decided to dive into that world back in Barcelona. She's been interacting with international communities since her teen years and she's passionate about languages, healthy living, and other cultures. 
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Pilar Capdevila
Student Services Advisor
Pilar was born and raised in Mexico City and lived with a host family in Canada for one year during her high school studies. She studied Psychology at Universidad Anáhuac México, and came to Barcelona to complete her Master’s degree in clinical psychology for kids and teenagers. Her professional experience has been in the education sector as an English teacher, as well as in the entertainment sector, organizing and assisting CAPICÚA camps for kids. She is passionate about outdoor sports, cycling, and anything related to nature. She is eager to learn, explore, and she is a true believer of the importance of mental health awareness for the general population's wellness. 
 
 
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Rafa Mammos
Senior Academic Advisor
Rafael (Rafa) Mammos joined the CEA CAPA Barcelona Academic team as an Academic Advisor in December 2016. Rafa’s role is to advise students in academic matters and give support to faculty and staff in all academic initiatives. He coordinates the logistics for field studies, visits of guest speakers, library loans, student evaluations and special accommodations for students and his goal is to ensure both academic integrity and excellent customer service.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Rafa worked for CIEE (Council on International Educational Exchange) for five years, where he also taught Spanish language courses. Before that, he spent one academic year in Reed College (Portland, Oregon) as a Spanish Language Scholar. He has also worked in the International Relations Office at the Universitat de Barcelona. He speaks Catalan, English, Spanish, Italian, and some French. Rafa was born in Mallorca, but was raised in Barcelona. He has also lived in Italy, and has traveled on his own around Europe, USA, and India. In his spare time he enjoys playing football (as a goalie), reading, and writing.
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Sandra Tomás
Assistant Program Director, Student Services

Sandra is the primary contact for students in all issues related to student services. She keeps the Director informed and responds to student concerns in a timely manner. Sandra provides support to housing and academic coordinators and is responsible for assisting in planning and implementation. She also provides students with weekly email bulletins and supports students in their transition into the local environment.

Sandra was born in Brussels to Spanish parents. Thanks to her origins, she has always experienced the Spanish culture. After finishing her studies in 2001, she moved to the Catalan capital where she started her career in the tourism industry, working mainly for incoming travel agencies. She was also involved in projects for a European business women's association, financed by the European Commission.

Sandra earned a degree in Tourism at the Superior University School ISALT in Brussels and did a four-month internship in Barcelona during her last academic year. Sandra speaks Spanish, French, English, and Catalan.

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Sonia Priego
Senior Academic Advisor

As Senior Academic Advisor, Sonia manages the Spanish language courses to ensure high academic standards and course quality, as well as students’ registration in Spanish courses at CEA CAPA and our partner institutions. She also manages the tutoring program, and organizes and supervises cultural activities designed to enhance language acquisition. In addition, Sonia teaches several Spanish language courses.

Sonia was born and raised in Alcoy, Alicante, and graduated from the University of Alicante with a degree in Hispanic Philology. She speaks Spanish, Catalan, English, and some French. After graduation, Sonia accepted a job teaching Spanish at a small high school in Massachusetts, an unforgettable experience for her. After two years in the U.S., Sonia returned to Spain in 2002 to begin an M.A. in Teaching Spanish as Second Language at the University of Barcelona, which is how she ended up in Barcelona. She has taught Spanish for various study abroad programs in Barcelona, as well as at ESADE Business School. In her free time, Sonia enjoys reading, cooking, hiking, and traveling.

Sonia became involved in study abroad because her two years abroad showed her what an incredible experience it is to live in a different country. The time she spent in the U.S. helped her to understand the world—and herself—a bit better, and this is why she encourages her students to make the most of the wonderful opportunity they have to live and study abroad.

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Vanesa Toquero
Spanish Language Coordinator & Senior Academic Advisor

Vanesa Toquero joined the CEA CAPA Barcelona Academic team as Spanish Language Coordinator & Senior Academic Advisor in January 2022. Vanesa oversees day-to-day academic matters and monitors performance in the Spanish Language area. She also coordinates large university cohorts by providing them with academic advising and general assistance.

Vanesa majored in English Studies from the University of Valladolid and had the opportunity to study abroad in Dublin, Ireland, as an undergraduate student. After graduating, she lived in West Virginia for two years, studying a Master’s Degree in TESOL / Latin American Literature while working as a teaching assistant at West Virginia University. After completing her master’s degree, she moved to Lafayette, Indiana, where she worked as a Spanish Teacher at Purdue University. Vanesa came to Barcelona in 2006 to pursue a Master’s Degree in Applied Linguistics at Pompeu Fabra University and has worked as a language teacher and teacher trainer for several higher education institutions since then. On a more personal note, some of her hobbies include travelling, going camping, swimming and hanging out with her loved ones. She also loves music and languages.

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Zenna Awad
Student Services Advisor
Zenna was born and raised in Barcelona. She studied Translation and Interpretation at Pompeu Fabra University and holds a degree in Primary Teaching from the University of Barcelona with a focus on foreign languages. In her final year there she resided in Budapest as an Erasmus student, where she travelled extensively and met people from different cultures, and this experience enriched her both personally and academically. She then worked as a Great Friend in the Programa Èxit (Success Program) run by Consorci d’Educació de Barcelona for three years. She enjoys teaching and supporting students through their learning. Zenna describes herself as cheerful, enthusiastic, and responsible, and has a passion for dance and theater.
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