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English Language Institute
PO Box 117051
223 Matherly Hall
Gainesville, FL 32611-7051
Phone: (352) 392-2070
Fax: (352) 392-3744

UCIEP, University and College Intensive English ProgramsThe ELI is a proud member of UCIEP, a consortium of University and College Intensive English Programs


Language Assistants

Jenny Acuff

Hello! My name is Jenny and this is my third time being a Language Assistant. I graduated this past spring with a degree in International Studies and Political Science with a minor in French. I am originally from Alexandria, VA, but have lived all over the world! I've lived in Mexico, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, Uganda, Liberia, and lastly, France, where I studied abroad for my senior year. I am happy to be back at the ELI and look forward to a fun-filled semester!


Maria Bolanos

Hello everyone! My name is Maria Bolanos. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. I was born in Colombia but grew up in Jacksonville, Florida. I love traveling, dancing, hiking and learning about other cultures. My most recent travel adventure was to Europe with my older sister, where we visited 10 cities in two weeks. I am super excited to be a Language Assistant and can’t wait to meet all of you!


Christena Carollo

Hello, I'm Christena, a senior journalism major at UF who loves meeting new people and attending ELI activities! I absolutely love writing, reading, photography, traveling and trying new foods. During my four years in college, I have studied abroad in Florence, Italy, and Dublin, Ireland, and I hope to work or teach abroad after I graduate. This is my second semester as an LA, and I am very excited to be a part of the ELI family again! If you see me around, please say hello! I would love to meet you.


Kaitlyn Cheshire

Hey everyone! My name is Kaitlyn, but you can call me Kait. I am a fourth-year Political Science major, with minors in Linguistics and Leadership, and a certificate in International Relations. I absolutely love learning about people and cultures!! I speak four languages: English, Spanish, Portuguese, and Turkish. I can't wait to meet you all!!


Shaina Crum

Hello there! My name is Shaina and I am a 4th year linguistics major here at UF. I'm also working towards getting a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language, or TESL. After I graduate I really want to travel the world and country hop. The dream is to live in a country for a year or two while teaching English there and then moving to a new country and starting all over! I love singing (I'm in an a cappella group called Tone Def) and painting and of course, learning about new cultures. I can't wait for you all to share yours with me!


Catherine Davis

Hello everyone! My name is Catherine but I also go by Cat. I'm starting my fourth year here at UF and this is my first semester as a Language Assistant. I'm double-majoring in International Studies (with a focus in Europe) and Spanish, and am enrolled in the International Scholars and Peace Corps Prep programs. I love learning about different cultures and languages, and have spent the past two summers abroad in the Dominican Republic and Belgium. I love spending time outside, like going on nature trail walks and going to the beach on the weekends. I can't wait to get to know everyone here at the ELI and have an amazing semester!


Lua Davis

Hello! My name is Lua, and I am a senior at the University of Florida studying psychology with hopes of becoming an industrial and organizational psychologist. This became my goal after witnessing the prejudices that my mother and other minorities and immigrants faced in the workplace. I left for Yasothon, Thailand right after my junior year (for 10 months) where I volunteered at a school and did plenty of couchsurfing. My interests include hiking, writing, trying out new recipes I find online, and much more. Let's hang!


Madelyn Diller

Hi everyone! My name is Madelyn Diller, but you can call me Maddie. I am a third-year linguistics major with a minor in TESL and I love learning about different cultures through language. My hobbies include reading good books, cooking and eating new foods, hiking, and spending time with friends, new and old! I've lived in Florida all of my life but I love learning about and traveling to new places. I think the ELI is one of the best organizations at the University of Florida and I'm excited to be a part of it!


Josh Fetterman

Josh Fetterman is a UF Senior, studying Telecommunication Production (film and video), and currently in his 5th semester as a Language Assistant. He loves Netflix, shooting movies, volleyball, hiking, talking (about literally anything, though especially religion), playing board and card games, and anything that involves people! If you see him say hello, because he would love to meet you.


Tyler Foor

Hey guys! My name is Tyler Foor and I am a sophomore studying biology on the pre-medical track! I was born and raised in Fort Myers, FL and I love to travel and explore new places. I am really big into sports, baseball, soccer, basketball, you name it! My plan for the future is to become a doctor and eventually work with Doctors without Borders and travel the world helping people through medicine. This is my first semester as a Language Assistant and I am very excited to meet you all!


Mikaela Garcia

Hi everyone! My name is Mika and I am a third-year public relations student at UF. I am from Orlando, Florida, and I am incredibly excited to be a part of the ELI again. I am very passionate about music, the beach, a healthy lifestyle, and animals. I'm an aspiring singer/song writer but for now I will pursue a career in Public Relations. I am Argentinean so I speak fluent Spanish and I can make some pretty amazing empanadas! I am very extroverted and strive off of the energies I receive from being around others. Other people make me happy and I hope I can make you all happy as well! I cant wait to get to know as many students as I can this year and I hope to be able to learn as much from you as you can learn from me.


Holland Hall

Hello! My name is Holland, and I am in my final semester at UF. I study history, and am currently in the process of writing a senior thesis on the English rock band The Who! I have made many international friends throughout my education, but I am so excited to be involved with ELI and to be a part of the students' language acquisition journey! I only speak English, so I am impressed with anyone willing to embark on learning another language. I expect to learn so much from the students at ELI, and I am really looking forward to enjoying all that Gainesville and UF has to offer with the students! It's gonna be swaggy!


Laura Henschel

Hi everyone, I'm Laura Henschel and I am a freshman baby gator here at UF. I'm studying Spanish and International Studies, with hopes to study abroad like my students! I was an international student during high school in Brazil, where I learned Portuguese and that has helped me in my study of Spanish. My favorite thing in the world is to travel, so until my next big adventure I enjoy meeting new faces from around the world. Catch me around campus in the Marston basement or eating Krishna lunch with friends!


Nathaniel Lee

Hi Friends! My name is Nathaniel Lee and I'm a third year Biology major with minors in German History and Anthropology! I love learning and speaking new languages, I'm a native speaker of English and understand Spanish and Arabic better than I can speak them, and hope to add German to that list soon! I enjoy running/biking distance, and more than anything in the world I absolutely love soccer! Can't wait for a fun semester.


Laura Londono

Hello! My name is Laura Londono, I have been an LA for 3 semesters now and I love meeting new students from different places. I am a UF student in my third year studying Microbiology and I want to be a doctor. I was born in Florida but all my family is Colombian! I love being an LA (:


Eirini Longini

Hi everyone! My name is Eirini and this is my 2nd year at UF! I am majoring in anthropology and minoring in statistics and I plan to work in public health. I have lived in Georgia and Washington State in the past, and in Gainesville for the last 6 years. I enjoy spending time with friends, drinking coffee, going to the beach, and trying to learn new languages (I am best at Spanish). I also love traveling and learning about different places and cultures, so one of my favorite things about ELI is getting to meet people from all around the world!


Estefania Melo

I am Stefanie Melo, a third semester LA at the ELI. My major is Microbiology & cell science and I love playing soccer and volleyball - those are my favorite weekday activities to go to. I was born in the Dominican Republic and came to the United States when I was 2. I am currently trying to learn Portuguese and I have a perpetual craving for Indian food. Speaking of food: I love food! One of my favorite things to do is walk around the grocery store and shop; I probably spend 80% of my money on food but there's no shame because it makes me happy. I love working at the ELI but most of all I love making friends with the wonderful students that I encounter. I've made some great friends and I'm positive that i'll make even more in semesters to come!


Chad Pierre

Hey guys! My name is Chad Pierre and I am a junior studying health education on the pre-medical track! You'll usually see me around campus smiling and studying. I love to travel and go on adventures. I am really into sports mostly soccer, basketball, volleyball but I will play anything! One day, I hope to become a pediatrician and help all children all over the world while traveling. Super excited to meet all of you this semester.


Alex Rabinowitz

Hi all! My name is Alex Rabinowitz, and I entering my fourth and final year here at UF. I am studying both International Studies with a focus on Latin America and the Caribbean as well as Spanish. I hope to attend law school in the fall of 2018 following my graduation at the end of Spring 2017. I am originally from South New Jersey, outside of Philadelphia, but I moved to Fort Myers, Florida when I was 13. I have an immense passion for culture, connecting different people, and meeting individuals from all walks of life, which is why I love my job here. I am also an avid ping pong player, so anyone who is up for a great table tennis challenge, I am your guy. I look forward to meeting many of you soon!


Samantha Ramos

Hello everyone! My name is Samantha Ramos and this is my 7th semester as a Language Assistant at the ELI. It has been two years since I was an LA but after graduating with my B.A. in Women's Studies I spent the following two years working and traveling throughout the U.S. and abroad. Most recently I was living in the beautiful city of Medellin, Colombia where I worked as an English instructor and scholarship coordinator. I love learning new languages, traveling, playing with puppies and making new connections and friends. Hope everyone has a great semester!


Kyla Slappey

Hello, my name is Kyla Slappey and this is my first semester as a Language Assistant. I am a sophomore here at UF studying International Studies. I was born in New jersey but was raised in Florida. I love the outdoors and am happiest when I am kayaking or hiking in the Florida wilderness. One day I hope to travel the world but for now I will settle with meeting new and exciting people from all over the world. I am so excited to be apart of ELI and cannot wait to meet you all!


Madhur Sonny Wadhwa

Hi guys, my name's Madhur but most of my friends call me Sonny. I am now a 3rd year premed nutrition major. I was born in India but have lived in central Florida for most of my life. I really enjoy spending time with students learning about their culture and I can bring food up in just about any situation. I've been told I'm a great cook but I hate to do it so I've stuck to the eating half. If you ever want to talk about basketball, food, or history I'm your guy.


Ryann Welch

Hello, my name is Ryann. I am majoring in International Studies, and I am minoring in International Development and Humanitarian Assistance. I would love to have a career in international law, or something related to sustainability. I enjoy learning new languages, reading, and volunteering.


CIP Assistant

Elizabeth Pantaleon

Tate Quinones

I am a senior pursuing dual degrees in international studies focused in the Middle East and public relations. Additionally, I have a minor in Arabic and am a part of the International Scholars Program and the Peace Corps Prep program. I started out as a Conversation Partner my first semester at UF and since have been a Language Assistant for four years. Now I serve as the Cultural Immersion Program Assistant, which means that I help with planning activities and assisting Language Assistants! I am a cultural enthusiast, therefore I absolutely love making friends from different parts of the world and different walks of life. Personally, I enjoy listening to music in different languages and dancing to anything that sounds good. I particularly enjoy dancing salsa, bachata, belly dancing and dabke! I am so grateful for all the wonderful people I've met and experiences I've had during my time at the ELI, and I am so excited to keep making great memories in the semesters to come!


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