Double Degree and ESOL program student Norma Villanueva has been working as a Parent Liaison at Garfield Elementary School in Corvallis for the past two years. She strives to strengthen Latino participation in the educational system and serve as a bridge between English and Spanish speaking families in the school. Building a strong support network for families to access community resources is also an important aspect of Norma’s position at Garfield.
As a student in the College of Education’s ESOL program, she believes that she is gaining the tools necessary to serve diverse populations of students and their families through her course work. “In my ESOL classes, I am always reminded to consider students’ cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds because it allows me to build strong relationships, communicate more effectively, and develop meaningful learning experiences.” Norma feels very fortunate to have the opportunity to be a part of OSU’s ESOL program and serve an important role in the multicultural and bilingual environment at Garfield Elementary School. According to Norma, “The ESOL program has been a wonderful experience and has made me feel confident about my teaching skills in a diverse community.”