“Romanian in HS” is a unique program in the US. While open to any high school student, the program is designed specifically for Romanian heritage students who aim at perfecting their communication skills in Romanian in order to earn the Washington State Seal of Biliteracy and the 4 credits required for college admission. By encouraging students to continue to college, providing volunteering opportunities within the Romanian community, and by offering mentorship opportunities, such as job shadowing, the program is a novel approach to ethnic community engagement for Seattle area Romanians.
Ileana Marin graduated Faculty of Letters at the Uniiversity of Bucharest in 1991. She began her academic career at the Ovidius University of Constanța where she taught comparative literature, coordinated International Summer Courses of Romanian Language, Culture, and Civilization for which she also taught Romanian between 1992 and 2004. In 2000, she earned her Ph.D. in philology from the University of Bucharest and later became an associate professor. From 2006, she has taught comparative literature courses at the University of Washington where she defended her second Ph.D. in textual studies in 2011. Since 2010, she has collaborated with the Center of Excellence in Image Studies – University of Bucharest. She authored 5 books, 3 in Romanian, as well as several articles. Ileana Marin has put effort into making Romanian contemporary culture more visible serving in the board of ARCS and working toward reintroducing Romanian at the University of Washington. At the UW she also taught Romanian as a Fulbright scholar in 2004 and as an instructor for FLAS fellows in 2007.
Otilia Baraboi is a higher education professional who immigrated to Seattle from Romania in 2000. She got her Ph.D. in French at the University of Washington, where she currently teaches French language and literature. Before coming to the US, Otilia worked as a literary journalist, published short-fiction and translations, and was actively involved in the cultural life of her hometown, Iasi. For Otilia, becoming part of the pioneer project “Româna la Liceu” represents a long-awaited opportunity to invest in the future of the Romanian American community and, on a more personal level, to have a positive impact in the ways in which her own two boys define and pass on their rich cultural and linguistic heritage.
Jim Augerot is an Emeritus Professor in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Washington. Although his main work has been with the Slavic Languages, he has been involved in Romanian affairs since his first two-year stay in Cluj-Napoca in 1964-66. He is the author of a Romanian textbook for college students and a joint work (with Dumitru Chitoran and Hortensia Parlog) on the comparison of Romanian and English pronunciation. He has been active in the promotion of the study of Eastern Europe both in the Slavic Department and as Chair/Director of the Russian, East European and Central Asian Studies (2009-2012). He looks forward to greater inclusion of Romanian studies at the University and increased involvement of the community in all facets of modern Romania.
Gloria Man is a German Language Instructor and Ph.D. Candidate in Germanics at the University of Washington. A native of Timisoara, Gloria grew up bilingual, German-Romanian in a multiethnic family. Her upbringing in a multicultural environment instilled in her a life-long curiosity and respect for different cultures, interests that drive her academic and professional activities. Gloria's professional experience as a translator, interpreter, and foreign language teacher includes working with global corporations such as Continental, Siemens, and Daimler-Chrysler, both in Europe and in the USA. Gloria brings to ARCS a passion for intercultural dialogue, expertise in the field of German speaking cultures, and experience in corporate communications.
Mariana Oltean has a life-long passion about teaching. Shortly after completing her degree in Romanian and French language and literature at the University of Bucharest, she started teaching at Sf. Pantelimon High School in Bucharest, helping her students to participate in the regional competitions on Romanian literature. After a few years, she moved in the Pacific Northwest where she has taught French at the French American School of Washington since 2002. In parallel, for the last nine years, Mariana continued to volunteer as a Romanian teacher and she coordinated the Romanian program at the Summer school of the "Three Holy Hierarchs" Romanian Orthodox Church. Mariana Oltean holds a OSPI Professional Teaching Certificate for teaching Romanian and French language and literature (grades K1-12).
Nadia Schmieder was born in Petrosani, Hunedoara. After graduating English and Romanian from the Faculty of Letters at the University of Bucharest, she earned an MA in Applied Linguistics from the same university. She worked as translator for the American Bar Association and participated in the modernization of high education in Romania after 1989 working with the British Counncil in Bucharest. In 1989, she moved to Washington State where she changed gears and took over an IT program at Bellevue Community College. For 12 years she served as a Business Analyst for King County in Seattle, preparing software textbooks and training staff. Currently she is a real estate agent who enjoys teaching basic Romanian to her clients.
Mădălina Tonciu was born in Bucharest, România. She studied at the University of Bucharest where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Romanian and French language and literature. After having taught for 16 years Romanian and French in a Middle School and High School in Bucharest, she obtained the highest rank in teaching. Mădălina relocated to Seattle where she worked in French Immersion School in Bellevue. With a Master’s degree in Special education from the San Diego University, with many years of classroom experience in Europe and in the US, and with great dedication to provide students with excellent education, she is confident that her ability will contribute substantially to the “Romanian in High School” program.
Iulian Calinov was born in Bucharest Romania. Iulian holds a masters degree in Electrical Engineering from the Politechnic University of Bucharest and a Masters of Business Administration in Corporate Financa jointly from Bucharest School of Economics and Université du Québec à Montréal. Iulian has worked as an Assistant Professor with the Politechnica University of Bucharest for 6 years after graduation, teaching Control Theory, Digital Control, Microprocessor Systems, Electric Drives and Microeconomics. After a brief stint as a Treasurer for Philip Moris in Romania, Iulian moved to the United Stated to work for Microsoft in Redmond, WA in 1998. Currently, Iulian is a Principal Program Manager with Microsoft, and serves the Romanian community in Seattle as a Honorary Consul on Romania as well as the Secretary of Romanian American Society of Washington State.