Texas Tech University

Alumni Connect


Cassandra "Sandy" L. Henry, M.S. Interdisciplinary Studies, 2003; B.A. French & English, 1967


I am presently the Executive Director of Science Spectrum, a nonprofit museum in Lubbock for public informal science education. I have been director for almost 25 years. I helped found the museum. Formerly, I taught French and English at Coronado High School, LISD for four years during which time I sponsored the French Club.

I earned double B.A. degrees in French and English with a secondary teaching certification from Texas Tech. I earned a M.S. degree in Interdisciplinary Studies with concentrations in French, English, and Hospitality/Tourism.

How have language skills benefited me?

First of all, language is communication. I think that my communication skills in all areas have benefited by my language study, either foreign or native tongue. The skills of communication have been useful in "translating" to the public the understanding of science, the world around us. Science is just another "language" to interpret to the public! As my museum and film field is international, I travel a lot.

A knowledge of romance language construction, helps me understand, at least read and figure out, a little of the language of other romance language countries, in addition to a better knowledge of French. So many French words and terms, as well as others, are now a part of the everyday English language. I do have distant step relatives in France. We communicated for a while but have lost touch.

On the fun side, I'm often asked to translate gourmet menu French cooking terms, and a few haute couture phrases! My granddaughter likes learning French songs.

Sabrina S. Laroussi, Ph.D. Spanish, 2014


Sabrina Laroussi accepted a tenure-track faculty position in the Department of Modern Languages & Cultures at the Virginia Military Institute, in Lexington, Virginia. Laroussi currently serves as a Visiting Assistant Professor of Spanish at the College of Charleston, in South Carolina. Her dissertation, "Sicarios, putas y religión: lo grotesco en la narconovela colombiana", was supervised by Dr. George Cole.

Gorgui Ibrahim Tall, M.A. Romance Languages, French 2014


Ibrahim Tall has been accepted into the French and Italian doctoral program at Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois beginning in fall 2015. He received a fellowship to pursue the degree. His research interest includes African Oral Tradition, African Literature and Cinema.

Laura Valentín-Rivera, Ph.D. Spanish Candidate


Laura Valentín-Rivera has accepted an offer from Kansas State University for a tenure track, Assistant Professor of Spanish position, beginning in August 2015. Some of Ms. Valentin-Rivera's duties will be teaching grammar, composition and linguistic courses at the undergraduate level and courses on second language acquisition and literacy teaching and development at the graduate level. During her campus visit Ms.Valentín-Rivera gave a research talk titled: "Sociocultural implications of collaborative work: A case of mixed pairs." This topic is related to her doctoral dissertation, which is supervised and directed by Dr. Idoia Elola. She will defend her dissertation this summer.

Yesenia Blanco, B.A.; M.A. Romance Languages-Spanish, 2014, is pursuing a Ph.D. in Spanish at Berkeley.

Rachel Hicks, M.A. Romance Languages-French 2015, will be a lecturer for 2 years at the Université Champagne Ardennes, France.

Daniel W. Hopkins, Ph.D. Spanish 2014, is an Assistant Professor at Tarrant County College Trinity River Campus.

Ashley Maloney, M.A. Classics 2012, will be pursuing a Ph.D. in Classical Archaeology at Bryn Mawr College.

Abraham Mata, Ph.D. Spanish 2014, is Assistant Professor at Lubbock Christian University.

Patrick Murray, B.A. French 2014, graduated from the Texas Tech Law School in May 2015 and just took the Bar exam.

Jane Ann Watson, B.A. French 2015, was offered a job in Petroleum Engineering in Colorado.

Nathan Wolcott, M.A. Classics 2015, has been accepted to Harvard Law School.

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