Where are they Wednesdays: Stories of UNCW Spanish Alumni

Emily Sena - Class of 2013, Spanish BA with licensure Class of 2014, Spanish MA

Why did you study Spanish?

My older sister got a minor in Spanish at UNCW and graduated in the spring of 2007. She always talked about how much she loved her Spanish classes and in particular her professors. I fell in love with the language in high school and knew before I graduated that I wanted to attend UNCW and study Spanish there because of the amazing departmental support I’d receive as a student. I wasn’t wrong, and I had the best experiences with my professors guiding me.

How do you use Spanish now?

It was never in my plan to become a Spanish teacher until my professor and advisor, Dr. Mount, sat me down and told me she thought I would make a great teacher. It is also because of her and Dr. Brian Chandler’s guidance that I continued my education and earned my master’s degree in the combined BA/MA program. Since I finished my master’s at UNCW in the Spring of 2014, I have been a Spanish teacher in Wake County. Since 2016 I have been the AP teacher at my school for both AP Spanish Language and AP Spanish Literature. Since 2017 I have served as a co-advisor of our school’s chapter of the National Spanish Honor Society and as the department chair for World Languages at my school. I love being able to impact my students’ lives and encourage them in their pursuit of proficiency the same way that my professors did for me. I also enjoy having the opportunity to lead my department and support my fellow language teachers because I know how impactful strong leadership has been in my education and career, and I want to give back to others.