Skip to content
Fernando Rubio PhD


Director, Second Language Teaching and Research Center (L2TReC)


Fernando Rubio

Professor, Spanish
801-581-6729 | LNCO 1930

Education: Ph.D., 2000, SUNY at Buffalo

Interests: Second Language Acquisition; Language Teaching Methodology; Technology-Assisted Language Learning.

He is President Elect of the National Federation of Modern Language Teachers Associations (NFMLTA) and Chair of the MLAs’ Executive Committee of Applied Linguistics.

Jane F Hacking PhD


Co-Principal Investigator, Language Training Center (LTC)

Jane F. Hacking

Professor, Russian
801-581-6688 LNCO 1930

Education: Ph.D., 1993, University of Toronto

Interests: L2 Russian; L2 Phonology; Dual Language Immersion; Language Proficiency.



Catherine Scott


Associate Director, Administration


Catherine Scott

Associate Director, Administration
801-585-9438 LNCO 1930

Education: B.A., International Relations, San Francisco State University.

Interests: She has held university administrative roles (UC Berkeley, University of Pittsburgh and the University of Utah) for over twenty years.  She oversees L2TReC’s grant activities and manages the day-to-day operations of the Center.


Lissie Ah Yen


Program Coordinator, Administration & Associate Instructor, Samoan

Lissie Ah Yen

Coordinator, Administrative Program 
801-581-7570 | LNCO 1930

Education: B.S., Information Systems, Brigham Young University Hawaii.


Interests: Before joining the center Lissie served as the Administrative Assistant to the Dean and Chair of College of Human Development and School of Education at the Brigham Young University Hawaii for 7 years. 

Jill Landes-Lee


State Director, Utah Bridge Program


Jill Landes-Lee

State Director, Bridge Program
801-585-2682| LNCO 1930

Education: B.A., University of Wisconsin-Madison; M.A., Ed.D., University of Utah.

Interests:  K-20 pathways for dual language immersion (DLI) and Heritage language students; Effects of DLI on college readiness, college access & postsecondary achievement.

She serves on the executive board for the Southwest States Association for Language Teachers (SWCOLT) and the state board for Utah Foreign Language Teaching Association (UFLA).

Johanna Watzinger Tharp PhD


Research Coordinator, Dual Language Immersion (DLI)

Johanna Watzinger-Tharp

Associate Professor, Linguistics
801-585-7148 LNCO 1930

Education: M.A., Ph.D., University of Texas, Austin.


Interests: L2 methodology and teacher education, variation in German; effects of dual language immersion education on academic achievement.

She serves as the co-chair of Utah’s World Language Council.

Anne Lair PhD


Director of Curriculum & Coordinator,  French Bridge Program

Anne Lair

Professor/Lecturer, French-World Languages and Cultures
01-581-7534 LNCO 1930

Education: Ph.D., The Ohio State University

Interests: Teacher training, bilingualism, proficiency, interculturality, teaching of culture, pedagogy, and symbolism of food.

Recipient of the 2020 AATF Dorothy Ludwig Excellence in Teaching Award at the Post-Secondary level. She has been accredited as the Honorary Consul of France in Utah since 2017 and was recognized as Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Palmes Académiques in May 2017.



Director of Curriculum & Coordinator, Chinese Bridge Program 

Shin Chi Fame Kao

Director of Curriculum & CoordinatorChinese Bridge Program
801-585-0988 | LNCO 1930

Education: B.S., National Cheng-Chi University, Taiwan; M.Sc., University of Strathclyde, U.K.; Doctoral Candidate University of Utah

Interests:Dual language immersion education, teacher education, educators’ professional development program, language proficiency assessment, language teaching methodology


Maribel Luengo


Director of Curriculum & CoordinatorSpanish Bridge Program 

Maribel Luengo

Director of Curriculum & CoordinatorSpanish Bridge Program
801-585-3014 | LNCO 1930

Education: B.A., M.A., Political Science and Administration, Complutense University of Madrid, Spain.

Interests: Bilingual education, educators' professional development and support; academic outcomes of Title I Schools' students.

She is the former Director of the Spanish Resource Center at both BYU and the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, NM, and principal of a dual immersion school.

Elnaz Kia


Research Associate - Postdoctoral

Elnaz Kia

Research Associate - Postdoctoral

Education: Ph.D., Northern Arizona University

Interests: Corpus Linguistic Approaches to L2 Research and Pragmatics; Corpus-Informed Pedagogy.

She oversees the development and maintenance of L2TReC’s multilingual spoken and written corpora.

Keri Gonzalez


Director of Curriculum & CoordinatorSpanish Bridge Program 

Keri Gonzalez 

Director of Curriculum & CoordinatorSpanish Bridge Program
LNCO 1930

Education: Ph.D., University of Utah

Interests: Literature, languages and cultures, second language acquisition, educators’ professional development and support, curriculum development, and creative writing.



Coordinator, Specialty Media

Darby Bailey McDonough

Coordinator, Specialty Media 
801-585-0325 LNCO 1930

Education:  ABD Ph.D. Regent University, MBA-IT, Western Governor's University, GCIS, University of Utah David Eccles School of Business

Interests:  Education-entertainment transmedia with advanced technologies (voice assistants, robots, blockchain). 

She serves on the board of Utah Women in Film & Television.

blonde girl in front of bush, smiling


Program Assistant

Elizabeth Meyr

Program Assistant

Education: B.A., Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Brigham Young University-Hawaii

Interests: Second language aquisition and administration;  Corpus research and applications. 

She coordinates Bridge enrollment efforts and is also on L2TReC's corpora development team.  





L2TReC Our Community
Gregg Roberts


Gregg Roberts

GreggABD (Ph.D.), Comparative Literature (French & Education emphasis) University of Utah, is the Director of Dual Language Studies for American Councils of International Education in Washington DC. He was the World Language & Dual Language Immersion Specialist for the Utah State Board of Education. He was also the co-project director of the Flagship Language Acquisition Network (F-LAN), a national consortium of 20 states led by Utah and recently funded by the National Language Flagship program (US Department of Defense). His work with the Utah Legislature and Governor’s office led to groundbreaking changes in the way world languages are viewed and funded within the state’s K-12 schools. The  K-12 program he designed with his team is being used as a model of innovative world-language education nationally and internationally. 

Gregg has taught at both the secondary and university levels. He also served as the Granite School District’s World Language Specialist. He was named the 2009 National Council of State Supervisors of Foreign Language State Supervisor of the Year, the 2015 ACTFL Leo Benardo Award for Innovation in K-12 Language Education, and he is a recipient of the PalmsAcadémiques from the French Government.



Lucia Rubio  


Lucia Rubio

Lucia currently teaches Spanish Advanced Grammar and Composition at the University of Utah and is the Advisor for the Spanish Teaching Major/Minor program. She is also a Spanish Secondary coordinator for the Utah Dual Immersion Program. She is a certified OPI tester, AAPPL rater, and an examiner for the Instituto Cervantes. She has been a Spanish AP reader for The College Board. Interests: (DLI) Dual Language Education, L2 Assessment and Teaching. 


Ofelia Wade


Ofelia Wade

Ofelia received her Bachelors of Arts from Weber State College, Utah in Elementary Education with an endorsement in Reading. She received her M. Ed. in Learning Disabilities from American University in D.C. and an Administration Endorsement from Utah State University, Utah. Ms. Wade is currently a Ph. D. Candidate at the University of Utah, focusing on immersion education. 
She serves as the Utah Spanish Dual Language Immersion Director and the Canyons District Dual Language Immersion Coordinator. She oversees eight dual language immersion schools in the Canyons District and 101 additional Spanish dual language immersion schools throughout the state of Utah. She has previously served as a special education teacher in K-6, serving mild-moderate and severe populations, a regular education teacher and a 23-year veteran elementary administrator, including seven years as principal of an immersion school. She has been recognized for her scholarship, strong instructional leadership and innovative vision by being the recipient of: “Utah Pioneer for International Development Award”, DAESP “Innovator of the Year”, DAESP “Distinguished Principal of the Year”, DAESP “Instructional Leader of the Year”, and 2016 UFLA Lifetime Award.



Language Training Center Instructors


 Jason Andrus

Jason Andrus was a visiting assistant professor of Middle East Studies and Arabic at Brigham Young University in 2016 and currently adjunct professor there. He is a scholar of law and religion with a Juris Doctor degree from NYU School of Law and a MA in Comparative Religion from the University of Washington.  During the course of his graduate work his research in Arabic law and texts has given him the chance to continually teach courses in his first love in Middle East studies, Arabic language. He has taught first through fourth year Arabic courses at the University of Washington, NYU, BYU, in Amman, Jordan, and in Cairo, Egypt. His current research and writing focus is the intersection of law and religion in order to address incongruities between the legal/political system and conceptions of justice, in particular rationals for criminal punishment and majoritarianism in heterogeneous societies.

Shin Chi Fame Kao

Shin Chi Fame Kao is K-12 Chinese Outreach Coordinator in Confucius Institute at the University of Utah as well as Chinese Dual Language Immersion Program 7th-9th Grade Coordinator in Utah State Board of Education. She works in the areas of developing the curriculum and training teachers for the K-12 Chinese Dual Language Immersion program in Utah. She has 17 years of experiences in teaching Chinese language and culture to a diverse array of students of varying ages and abilities. Her research focuses on applied peer assisted learning strategies (PALS) to develop an effective Chinese reading program for Chinese language learners.
(801) 585-0988

Dori Huang

T. Dori Huang got her graduate degrees in political science from National Taiwan University, Columbia University, and Duke University, and worked as a piano teacher, policy analyst, and college lecturer before relocating to Utah. She earned a degree in world languages with a secondary teaching license from the University of Utah, specializing in Chinese linguistics, second language acquisition, and curriculum development. She has been teaching Chinese from elementary to college, from beginners to advanced learners offering a full gamut of 10 levels of Chinese courses (including AP and IB Chinese). Currently, Dori teaches at Weber State University and serves as the president of the Utah Association of Chinese Teachers. Her research interests are in curriculum design, literacy development, as well as second language and multilingual acquisition.

Lily Alavi

Lily Alavi is an Associate Instructor of Persian language at the Department of World Languages and Cultures at the University of Utah. She has taught Persian Intermediate I &II and Persian Advanced I & II. She is also responsible for the Community Engaged Learning course of the department, which has a CEL designation (Community Engagement Learning) from the Bennion Center. This course entails lectures and readings, cross-cultural communications through simulation exercises, and community service in the Salt Lake City region.  Lily was born and raised in Tehran, Iran and lived there until 1993. She has a bachelor degree in French-Persian translation from Iran and a Master of Art in French Literature from the University of Maine, where she lived and worked for several years prior to moving to Utah in 2009.

Email: Lily Alavi


Takashi Ebira

Takashi Ebira is currently Associate Professor of Japanese at Salt Lake Community College.  He received both a B.A. and an M.A. in linguistics from the University of Utah.  He also received a TESOL certificate when he completed his M.A. program in 2001.  Takashi was Assistant Professor of Japanese at the Defense Language Institute (DLI) in Monterey, California.  While he was at DLI, he also served as an ILR OPI tester and conducted Japanese speaking tests for U.S. and Canadian military personnel.  Takashi's current academic interest is related to contrastive linguistics between English and Japanese, including pedagogical grammar and present-day usage of both languages.

Email: Takashi Ebira  

Hyesun Kim

Hyesun Kim is an Associate Instructor of Korean language at the Department of World Languages and Cultures at the University of Utah. She received her bachelor's in Arabic at the Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul, Korea. During her undergraduate, she received teacher licensure in Japanese and Arabic. She received an M.Ed. in teaching Korean as a foreign language at the same institution. She completed her M.Ed. and TESOL certificate at the University of Utah. She is a Ph.D. candidate in Education, Culture and Society. Hyesun’s current academic interests include heritage language education among immigrant families in the U.S. and family language planning and policy related to their language ideologies and language identity.

eMail:  Hyesun Kim

Kona Eldredge

Koeun Park (Kona Eldredge) is a Korean language instructor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures and L2TReC, a doctoral student in the Department of Education, Culture and Society, and a graduate assistant at the Urban Institute for Teacher Education within the University of Utah. She earned her M.Ed and bachelor's degrees in linguistics (with TESOL certificate) and international studies at the same institution. Since 2013, she has been teaching Korean courses both to university students and military linguists at the U. Previously, she directed a Korean community heritage language school where she also taught. She coordinated an ESOL program and taught English to refugee populations at Salt Lake County. Her specific areas of interest include bilingual education, heritage language education, multicultural education, and TESOL.

Email:  Kona Eldredge


Elena Grajinskaya

Elena Grajinskaya graduated from the Lomonosov Moscow State University with a degree in Journalism, Literary Editing, and professional certification in Teaching Russian as a Foreign Language. Her research interests include international collaborations in the history of Russian journalism with a paper published about the Polish publicist and writer Jozef Ingacy Kraszewski in the Moscow University Annals (Vestnik MGU, Journalism series). Elena is a supporter of contextualized language instruction. She also obtained her M.B.A. degree from the University of Utah and co-founded an educational non-profit organization.

Olga Savenkova

Olga Savenkova was born and raised in Russia. She holds two Bachelor degrees from Russian universities, BS in Economics (Moscow State University) and BA in Cultural Studies (Nizhny Novgorod State Linguistic University), and a Master degree in Comparative Literary and Cultural Studies from the University of Utah. She is currently pursuing her doctorate degree in the same program. Her research interests include Russian, American, Classical Greek, and Modernist literature and culture. In teaching she focuses on communication and cultural topics. Her personal interests include family, classical music, and creative writing. 


Monica B. Orcutt

Mónica B. Orcutt holds a M.A. in Spanish Language, Culture and Latin American Literature from Brigham Young University-Provo and has also completed post graduate course work at the University of Texas at Austin.

She received an Endorsement in Teaching English as a Second Language and has completed mediation courses.  She also has training in Legal and Medical Translation and Interpretation.

She has been dedicated to presenting her research at scholarly conferences and publishing of her work. Monica’s literary research includes Latin American Jewish literature, women writers, culture, Latin American theatre and creative writing. She is the author of the book, Claves en el teatro de Nora Glickman.

She has extensive experience developing curriculum and facilitating intensive courses for the military.

Email: Monica Orcutt


Last Updated: 12/9/22