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CEA CAPA Seville, Spain Directory

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Seville, Spain Leadership

Victor Gonzalez
Center Director, Seville

As Center Director, Victor's role is to lead and oversee a team of dedicated professionals in all aspects of program planning and delivery at the CEA CAPA Seville Center. Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Victor served as the Director of an Opportunity Program at a private, liberal arts college in Upstate New York (1997-2002) and later led a study abroad center in Madrid, Spain (2002-2014). He has twice served on the board of the Association of North American University Programs in Spain (APUNE). Victor is a proud member of the academic honor society Phi Beta Kappa and holds a B.A. in History and Political Science from Skidmore College; he is also a candidate for an MBA at EAE Business School in Madrid. A native of Havana, Cuba, Victor immigrated with his family to the United States of America at a young age and was the first in his family to attend and graduate university. His love of learning has and continues to guide his life. He has studied abroad in Madrid, Spain and is an avid global trotter, having journeyed through 58 countries in four different continents.

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Mary Alice Soriero
Academic Director

As Academic Director of CEA CAPA Seville, Mary Alice’s role is to oversee the many facets to the smooth running of academics at the CEA CAPA in Seville – including program elaboration, syllabi development, and coordination of CEA CAPA faculty. Prior to administering CEA CAPA academics in Seville, she held a number of international work experiences. She was a USIA Fellow in Peru, a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand, and has taught English to speakers of other languages in Japan, Taiwan, and the US. Currently she is also an adjunct professor at Loyola University – Andalucia.

Mary Alice holds a MS. Ed in Education, Culture & Society from the University of Pennsylvania and a BA from Pennsylvania State University in East Asian Studies. She studied abroad in Japan and participated in short-term educational projects in Ecuador & Morocco. Through these global experiences she discovered the importance of engaging across cultures to meaningfully connect with the human experience in a global context. These gave her insights to revel in the the unknown and uncomfortable to not only build resilience, but also advocate for justice to promote equity amongst a wide span of global neighbors.

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Seville, Spain Team

Aoife Higgins
Program Advisor
Aoife ("E-fa") is from the south of Ireland, has been living in Spain for over eight years, and  now calls beautiful, sunny Seville her home. Her passion for international education began in 2014 when she studied abroad in Alicante. As a former psychology undergraduate, she has a keen interest in mental health and student wellbeing. Aoife hopes to combine her personal firsthand experience with her studies to best help and serve students during their time in Seville. She truly values witnessing the transformative impact studying abroad has on each student and feels very lucky to be able to work in this sector.
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Aranoa Roldan
Student Services Coordinator

As Student Services Coordinator, Aranoa is responsible for the organization of students’ arrival, orientation, immersion activities, and excursions, along with every aspect of daily life in Seville that helps students immerse in Spanish culture. She also coordinates the communication processes, resources, and health and safety services that CEA CAPA Seville provides for students.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Aranoa worked for the Convention Center in Seville, as well as creating traveling initiatives and leading groups for different companies in the tourism industry. Aranoa obtained a degree in Tourism at EUSA and completed her education with a postgraduate course in Entrepreneur Initiatives from the Confederación de Empresarios Andaluces.

Aranoa has also studied abroad in England and lived in the US. For this reason, she is grateful to have the opportunity to help students grow when they are challenged by cultural differences during their study abroad experience. It is always rewarding for her to lead students into a better global citizen version of themselves.

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Esther Morante
Senior Housing Coordinator

As Senior Housing coordinator at CEA CAPA Seville, Esther is responsible for managing all aspects of Center housing, including selecting and maintaining a network of relationships with local constituents to offer a variety of housing options that provide the best housing experience for all program participants. She works to ensure housing quality and host families' engagement. Esther advises students on issues related to housing, the adaptation process, and making the most out of their study abroad experience. She also supports the Student Services department.

Prior to joining CEA CAPA, Esther taught English as a foreign language and worked in the tourism and hospitality industry. Esther holds a B.A. in English Language and a Master’s Degree in Teaching in Secondary Schools, Vocational Training and Language Centers from Universidad de Sevilla. She is a native speaker of Spanish, speaks fluent English, and has also studied French and German. Esther studied abroad in France and Northern Ireland, a life-changing experience that increased her interest in other cultures. Esther feels that studying abroad influences students' career paths, worldview, and self-confidence, all while helping them better understand their own cultural values and biases.

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Kevin Francis Whalen
Career and Internship Coordinator

Kevin Francis Whalen, a New York City native, is the Career and Internship Coordinator in Seville, Spain. He holds a B.S. in Communications, a Master's in Secondary Education, as well as a Master's in Business and is also an entrepreneur and investor. Kevin has a wealth of experience in developing new internship opportunities in Seville and maintaining relationships with a diverse range of companies and organizations across various sectors. His passion is matching students with the best possible internship that aligns with their interests, skills, and career goals. Throughout the internship process, Kevin provides unwavering support to the students, guiding them through the application process, preparing them for interviews, and providing career advice. Kevin is a firm believer in the power of international internships to provide valuable learning experiences and prepare students for the workforce.

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Maria Victoria Sepulveda
Student Advisor
As Student Advisor, Maria Victoria (Vicky) is responsible for maintaining close contact with the students and is usually the first person students see as they enter our Study Center. Vicky accompanies students during their immersion activities and excursions and is a great resource of information about our city’s heritage and traditions. Born and raised in Seville, Vicky has also lived in Gran Canaria, Canary Island, and Madrid. Her passion for languages and other cultures led her to seek a degree in Tourism. She is very accustomed to working with all types of individuals thanks, in part, to her experience in the hospitality industry.
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Michaela Yisrael
Academic, Career and Internship Coordinator

Michaela manages the partner institution matriculation processes, guides students through their study abroad experience, and ensures international internship students have a fulfilling professional and academic experience. She is committed to helping students achieve their educational and career goals while also experiencing the cultural richness of Seville. Originally from New York City, Michaela has resided in Spain for over a decade. She holds a master’s degree in teaching from La Universidad de Alcala de Henares in Madrid and a bachelor’s degree in political science from The City University of New York (CUNY) at Baruch College. After studying abroad in Salamanca, Spain, she became fond of Spain. Since then, Michaela has gained extensive experience in education program development and international student recruitment in various Spanish, American, and international firms. Outside of work with CEA CAPA, Michaela enjoys exploring diverse cultures and traditions, including gastronomy, folklore, and music. She has a keen interest in travel and is excited to share her love of exploring new places with her and her husband’s son Malik, who was born in January 2022. She also embraces her entrepreneurial spirit by working for her family’s security firm.

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