Catalina joins the Miller School as its newest faculty member in Spanish. She is a graduate of The College of William & Mary, receiving a BA in Hispanic Studies in 2008. Catalina continued her study of Latin America at American University, receiving an MA in Spanish & Latin American Studies in 2011. She is finishing her Ph.D. in Romance Languages and Literatures at the University of Michigan—where her dissertation focuses on contemporary Colombian film, art and literature.
Over the last ten years, Catalina has presented her research in dozens of conferences–domestically and internationally–including the Latin American Studies Association, American Studies Association, Modern Languages Association, and American Comparative Literatures Association. She has two publications under review and a published co-translated work, Thoughts, Actions, Practices (Common Notions Press, 2018).
In addition to teaching Spanish at U-M, Catalina is committed to fostering students’ learning beyond the classroom. She completed U-M’s Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies and worked as a digital archive researcher at the International Center for Art of the Americas, in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She also served as a Graduate Assistant for the Rackham Program in Public Scholarship, as well as an Engaged Pedagogy Fellow with the Office of Community-Engaged Academic Learning. She hopes to bring these experiences that embody the Miller School’s educational philosophy of minds, hands, and hearts to her teaching, advising, and mentorship.
As an educator, Catalina is dedicated to the values of diversity and inclusion. She completed U-M’s Professional Development Certificate in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) and was nominated to serve on U-M’s DEI Student Advisory Board to work with U-M’s Chief DEI Officer on university-wide diversity work. Additionally, she is a member of the Edward A. Bouchet Graduate Honor Society. She anticipates bringing this commitment to diversity to support the initiatives and spirit of inclusion at the Miller School.
Originally from Colombia, she grew up in South Florida and can’t imagine living in a place without seasons ever again! In her free time, you can find her at a local yoga studio, checking out the food scene in Charlottesville, and traveling (most recently to New Zealand)! Her partner, Dorothy Piatt, works as the Associate Pastor for University and Social Justice Mission at Westminster Presbyterian Church (PCUSA) in Charlottesville. Together, they love to explore the mountains and wineries of Virginia, plus evening walks with their two dogs, Brennen and Nacho.