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Graduate Students AY 2023-24

Ana Parada is from Lisbon, Portugal. She holds a BA in Education from the Instituto Superior de Ciências Educativas in Odivelas, Portugal. She was a teacher of Maths and Science in Lisbon for 12 years before moving to the USA in 2012 with her family. She obtained an MA in Portuguese Studies and is currently pursuing a PhD in Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Clara Simões Bordas holds a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Coimbra (Portugal) and is currently an MA student in Portuguese Studies at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Professionally, Clara has served at the Consulate of Portugal in New Bedford for over a decade and joined the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in 2018. After working at the Center for Portuguese Studies and Culture/Tagus Press for several years, she is now on the staff of the Office of Research and Innovation. Her favorite topic is ancient history, and her research interests include epigraphy, ethnomathematics, iconography and linguistics.

Fernando Linhares returns to the south coast of Massachusetts, the migration destination of his family (Brazilian/Azorean), as a PhD student in the Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory program at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. His research interest is religion and spirituality in the Lusophone world reflecting on his family’s orthodox practices alongside the liberal theologies arising from Luso-Afro-Brazilian areas specifically as they apply to marginalized populations. Fernando has served as a Prison Chaplain for over a decade, a Criminal Justice instructor since 2005, and an attorney since 1993. He received a Doctorate in Ministry (urban ministry) from Drew University; an MFA (creative nonfiction) from Salve Regina; an M.Div. from the New Brunswick Theological Seminary; an MA (Latin American Studies) from the University of Texas at Austin; an LLM (environmental justice) from Pace Law Center; a JD from Rutgers Law School; and a BA from New York University.  

Gina Reis

Grace Holleran (she/they, ela) translates literature from Portuguese to English with research interests in translating radical politics, relationships between queerness/translation, and alternative publications in relation to Brazilian and Portuguese LGBTQ+ activist movements. A classically trained trumpet player with a BS in music from Temple University, Grace approaches translation through a musical lens; their literary translations (which span Brazilian, Portuguese, and Angolan authors) have been published in various journals, including Gávea-Brown, Saccades Review, Brittle Paper, and Barricade: A Journal of Antifascism & Translation, where they are a member of the editorial collective. Grace is currently ABD in the PhD program in Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory and holds a Distinguished Doctoral Fellowship at the Center for Portuguese Studies & Culture/Tagus Press at UMass Dartmouth. 

Jason Borges is a Massachusetts native, born and raised in a Luso-American family from Somerset, MA. He received his BA in Portuguese from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in 2014. He returned to the university as a PhD student in Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory in Fall 2015 and is currently ABD, having defended his dissertation proposal, "'A gente fala bruto': Investigating the role of speakers’ perception and ethnic identity in Portuguese heritage language development and maintenance," in August 2019. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, movies, travel, and learning new languages.

Nilson DaSilva holds a Master's degree in education with a concentration in Applied Linguistics-TESOL, an MBA in Strategic Marketing, and a BA in Portuguese, and English. Before moving to New England, he was a teacher and high school principal in Brazil. He was awarded Best Practices for Leadership Education in Brazil by the Office of Global Educational Programs, US Department of Education. DaSilva is a former Fulbright Scholar in the Brazilian English Teachers Program in Miami, FL. He worked as a Portuguese and Spanish teacher at Central Falls High School (RI), where he initiated his research with Cape Verdean Portuguese heritage speakers. His research interests include teaching and learning Portuguese as a heritage language, social and cultural Identity, and applied linguistics. Currently, he is the Critical Language Scholarship (Portuguese) Campus Advisor, a student in the PhD in the Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory program, and a Teaching Fellow in Portuguese at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth.

Thaís Silveira is an Afro-Brazilian journalist dedicated to amplifying silenced narratives with a  particular focus on race, gender, and social justice. Inspired by the resilience and leadership of Black Brazilian women, she founded and edited the magazine Pretas (2017-19). Thais holds a Master's degree in Social Sciences from Unisinos (Brazil) and an advanced graduate certificate in Afro-Brazilian History and Culture, and is currently a PhD student in Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory and Teaching Fellow in Portuguese at UMass Dartmouth, having arrived in the United States as a Fulbright Scholar. Previously, she taught in the MBA in Diversity and Development of Inclusive Practices in Organizations at La Salle University, Brazil's pioneering program in this field. Her dissertation research revolves around media in the diaspora and communication networks of Black women from Portuguese-speaking countries.

Valdir Miranda

Vanusa Alexandra Vera-Cruz Lima is from the island of São Vicente in Cabo Verde. She holds a BA in International Relations (with an emphasis on political science) from the University of Candido Mendes in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and a master's degree in Applied Linguistics from UMass Boston. She taught Portuguese and Social Studies for OLÁ-Portuguese Dual Immersion Program of Cambridge Public Schools for the middle grades (6th-8th) from 2012 to 2020. Lima's research interests are decolonizing foreign language education with an emphasis in reading; applied linguistics; and teaching and learning Portuguese as a heritage/foreign language. She is currently a Teaching Fellow in the Department of Portuguese at UMass Dartmouth.

Viviane Ferreira de Faria holds two MA degrees, in Portuguese & Brazilian Literary and Cultural Studies and in Hispanic Linguistics, from the University of New Mexico, having earlier completed a BA degree with an emphasis in English and literature at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) in Brazil. As a language-learning enthusiast, she has also studied Italian language and literature, and a bit of French. She has worked as a language instructor for more than 20 years and has been teaching Portuguese and Spanish in the US since 2012 at UNM, Harvard and Tufts. In the PhD program at UMass Dartmouth, she plans to continue her education and further develop her career by specializing in Portuguese as a heritage language and its acquisition through a multicultural perspective. 

Yasmin Zandomenico holds a BA in Portuguese from Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo (UFES), Brazil. She is currently a PhD candidate in the Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies and Theory program at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. Her global research interests include Brazilian literature and gender & sexuality studies. She is in an everlasting process of learning to play Brazilian tambourine. She is also a Teaching Fellow in the Department of Portuguese. 

YuXuan Liu

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