Teaching Assistants

Maria Aline Martins

Maria Aline Silva Martins holds a B.A in Languages and Literature - Portuguese and English (2013-2018) from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) and a M.A in Language Studies (2019-2021) from the same university. Her master’s thesis investigates Brazilian Northeastern migrations to the favelas in Rio de Janeiro, through the analysis of her own family experiences of leaving São Benedito (Ceará) and going to Rocinha (Rio de Janeiro) between the 1980s and the 1990s. In this autoethnographic research, Aline examines the multiple discursive construction of identities and (non) belongings of her family migration narratives. Aline is proudly a first-generation college graduate, being the first one in the family to obtain a master’s degree diploma. Her experiences as a language teacher dates back to 2014, when she started teaching English to Elementary and Middle School students in a public school in Rio de Janeiro as a PIBID/CAPES scholar (Institutional Scholarship Program of Initiation to Teaching). Since then, she has been teaching English in different and diverse contexts that include public, private schools and language institutes. Aline has a great passion for Brazilian popular rhythms, and she is eager to share her linguistic and cultural knowledge as a Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA) in the Portuguese program at Emory University.

Denise Pinheiro

Denise Pinheiro was born and raised in Piauí, one of the nine states in the Northeastern region of Brazil. She lived most of her life  in Teresina, the capital city of the state. She holds a Teaching Degree in Language and Literature Studies (English) from the Federal University of Piaui, as well as a M.A. in Literature from the same institution. Her research in both degrees revolves around science fiction written by women, focusing on how feminine points of view can reshape the genre and bring awareness to different discussion topics, since science fiction has often been used as means to explore real political, social, and environmental issues.

Denise has taught English to Brazilian students for six years now. In the first years of her undergraduate course, she took part in Idiomas sem Fronteiras, a program from the federal government of Brazil that aimed at promoting the internationalization of Brazilian high education. During the program she taught professors, students and the university’s staff, hosted roundtables to discuss everyday topics, organized workshops, and other academic events. Recently she has been working at a private school in her hometown Teresina, teaching English for kids and teenagers.

As a Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA), Denise expects to bring a different look towards Portuguese language and lusophone culture in general, helping students to find out more about social and political aspects that built that language and how popular culture is constantly changing it. Personally, she is thrilled to be able to share details about her culture, culinary, music, and dances.