Our teachers are the backbone of our program and our walking credentials. We couldn’t be prouder of their skills, their background and their professionalism.
Here, take a more personal glimpse–beyond their already well-established talent in the classroom–into the lives of our fascinating friends and find out which teacher:
Browse through the following pages for pictures and bios of some of the people who keep ILISA electric!
Carlos Rojas has been with us since 1990. Although his original studies are archaeology and cultural anthropology, teaching is what he likes to do most. He holds a master’s degree in teaching Spanish as a second language from Universidad de Costa Rica.~
~”ILISA has many strengths, none more important than the flexibility of the teaching staff. Carlos Rojas teaches Spanish, but it’s his professionalism and willingness to tailor classes to the needs of the student that makes him and ILISA special. … More Kay Wineforder, United States
Tatiana Marenco has a Bachelor degree in History and Spanish. She has been with us since 1997 and has been teaching a lot of students here at ILISA. Prepare yourself for a lot of talking, because this is the way Tatiana teaches Spanish to her students.
~”I felt excited to come to class each day because Tatiana expressed interest in the topics I enjoyed discussing. She is great! Professional, friendly, helpful, supportive – I felt Tatiana was genuinely interested in helping me learn …More“~ Bill Clements, United States
Maria Eugenia Quesada has been teaching Spanish, as well as French to foreigners for over 20 years now. She has a bachelor degree in French, a master’s degree in French literature both at the University of Costa Rica as of that in Paris, Sorbonne University. She has been teaching at places all over the world. ILISA’s students generally love her positive, encouraging attitude which inspires them to perform at their best ability.
~“Maria’s attitude is great! She is really helpful! Above that she is patient with us.”~ …More Melissa Perkins, United States
Edy Calore has been at ILISA since 2012 teaching Italian and Spanish. She started teaching English and Italian in her native Venezuela in 1980 after getting a degree in languages and pedagogy . Since then, hundreds of students of all ages have enjoyed her dynamism and enthusiasm in each class, her sweet personality and charisma make her one of the favorite teachers at ILISA.
~”She was an amazing teacher . When I return to Ilisa someday, I would be very honored to be her student again! Edy Calore is one of my favorite teachers of all time! Ilisa is so fortunate to have someone so hard working and dedicated” more
Ligia Bogantes has been a Spanish professor at ILISA since 1987 and has a career of more than 28 of teaching Spanish. She studied Spanish philology and Spanish teaching at the University of Costa Rica. She is one of our funniest professors who likes to spend her free time reading, going to the movie theatres and learning about new cultures.
~“ She is a wonderful teacher with a very positive attitude, very professional and also fun and informative, warm, relaxed and very conductive to learning.”~ …More
Ofelia Nikolova, United States
Elizabeth Robles is one of the student’s favorite professor, maybe because she enjoys teaching so much. She studied Spanish philology at the University of Costa Rica. Elizabeth is an amazing professor and a lady who you can discuss any topic of your interest with. She loves sports and has been running for more than 25 year. She also loves animals and is a vegetarian.
~“ Elizabeth is an absolute pleasure to learn from. She is very patient with me and, as I requested, she corrects minor errors that I make as we converse.…More Brandon Pierpont, United States
Gabriela Collado is also part of the ILISA family, she has been teaching Spanish since 1990, Gabriela has taught students at ILISA from 5 to 80 years-old, she is a versatile teacher that uses all resources available to make students feel comfortable more
Gustavo Barquero is well known for being extremely patient, he loves to work with beginner students and you will always see him with a smile in his face more
Francisco Estevanovich has been with us since 1990. He has a degree in Spanish linguistics, literature and master in Spanish second language.
Francisco’s classes are characterized as very dynamic, engaging and with no time to sit back. Participation 200%. Note: Even when Francisco retired from teaching on April 2017, he is still in our website for the hundreds of students who met him while at ILISA, he is still part of the family.
~”Hours and hours I spent talking with Francisco and I enjoyed every single moment, since he’s not only an excellent teacher whose explanations are perfectly clear and well-structured…More Marie-Cristine Kaptan, Switzerland
As part of our group programs, we organize one day and weekend excursions to the most popular destinations in Costa Rica. For these excursions we have the privilege to offer an outstanding guidance from knowledgeable and official guides.
Ana María Rodríguez has been our guide from 2012 and as a biologist, she can deeply inform you about the flora and fauna of Costa Rica without hesitation, Ana María has guided not only regular tours but business excursions to companies and more.
Paul Valverde has been our guide since 2016, he is one of the most charismatic and enthusiastic person we know, always smiling and making students enjoy every minute of their time in Costa Rica. Paul is extremely knowledgeable and his perfect English help students understand all details related to the trip more
In order to get acquainted with everybody as quickly as possible, please ‘meet’ our office staff.
Julio Salas is our young and energetic director. He has already accumulated 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur and holds a master’s degree in engineering plus a master’s degree on Business administration from the prestigious INCAE Business school. Julio is very proud of offering a high quality learning experience to each and every student at ILISA and successfully works towards maintaining ILISA as the best Immersion Program in Costa Rica since its inception in 1987. Although his parents are from Panama, Julio is as tico as the gallo pinto and enjoys getting to know the students, is passionate about computers and and finding new business opportunities.
Hellen Rojas is our program director, she is charge of marketing and design of new programs either for individuals or groups, including all the aspects involved in the execution and logistics. You will meet her as soon as you arrive to ILISA, her office is in the first floor and the door is always open for students who want to chat or need help.
Dennis Quirós is our Spanish supervisor and teacher. Dennis is a former journalist and have also studies on educational informatics, teaching, literature and communications. He has been working for Ilisa since 2005 and all students meet him because he is also in charge of the field trips, he knows better San José than anyone . As coordinator, his supervision dictates that classes are always dynamic, enjoyable, and effective. …More
Yorlieth Aguilar (call her Yor, it is easier!) is ILISA´s enrollment coordinator, she will assist you with your registration in our program including all your questions before arrival, and once in Costa Rica, with any questions about the city, tours we have, how to travel by bus, the country itself, money exchange and payments. She is extremely organized and is the smiling first face you see as soon as you open the door. Yorlieth enjoys a lot going to the gym and learning new languages.
Silvia García is our well known cuban dance teacher, Silvia was born in la Habana and since she was 5 years-old she started dancing ballet. As a professional dancer she has participated in many shows and dance professional groups in Cuba as in Costa Rica. Silvia is our teacher since 2012 and it is impossible to forget if you took a class with her, she is 100% pure energy and even if you have 2 left foot, you will learn something in her classes. Students as you can see in the pictures absolutely love her! more
Yuliana Cortés, or Yuli as we call her is our foreign languages enrollment representative for foreign languages, she assists Costa Rican students who enroll in our English, French, Italian, Portuguese or German courses. You will find her very focus and talking to people on the phone all the time. At times , she is at the front desk and willing to help you.
Tano is the person that will pick you up at the airport. He will provide you your first information and bring you to your accommodation. He is very sympathetic.
Manuel Brenes is ILISA’s accountant since August 2002, you will see him around helping students every time they need it. He Enjoys playing football, basketball and spend time in the mountains and also he is a great dancer!. In the mountains, his favorite activity is trout fishing
Gabriela Zuñiga is our sweet ILISA’s housekeeper, she works hard to keep the building immaculately clean….in fact, its been known for the spotless glass doors in the office to sometimes cause us problems!