Texas Tech University

Faculty Focus

Anna Mastrantuono, Lecturer in Spanish


I earned my BA degree in Modern Languages and Literatures in 2010, and a MA degree in Russian Language and Literature in 2013 at State University of Milano (Italy), my hometown. After six years working as a Spanish and Russian teacher in high schools in Milano, I joined Texas Tech University in 2019 and began a MA program in Romance languages. I specialized in Hispanic Linguistics and worked as a part time instructor of Spanish. My research interests include sociolinguistic variation in Spanish, Spanish phonetics and phonology, and second language acquisition and pedagogy. I defended my thesis Present Perfect and Preterit variation in the Spanish of Lima (Peru) and Mexico City (Mexico) on May 14, 2021. Currently I am working as a Spanish lecturer at TTU, so I am still in the “CMLL family”!

My experience as a graduate student at TTU has been extremely valuable from both a professional and a human point of view. I improved my skills as a teacher and learned about US Spanish and Texas Spanish. Furthermore, I had the opportunity to work with Spanish heritage speakers, putting in practice cutting-edge pedagogical approaches designed for this profile of students. And last but not least, I familiarized myself with West Texas culture and could appreciate the cultural melting pot of this border region. I feel deeply enriched by this experience and would recommend anyone to go and earn a degree abroad!

Dania Martinez, Lecturer in Spanish


My name is Dania Martínez. I'm currently an employee at Texas Tech University, in the department of classical and modern languages and literature (CMLL). I recently graduated from Texas Tech with a master's degree in literature. I've been working in CMLL for three years now, not only teaching but actively participating in departmental activities. My long-term goal is to acquire a Ph.D. with a focus in border studies and migration. I plan to continue teaching lower and upper-level Spanish classes, my goal is to facilitate the process of learning a secondary language, while making the process enjoyable. Due to my cultural background, I recognize the challenges and need of learning a secondary language. The Spanish-speaking population is growing rapidly, as well as the need for bilingual teachers. Spanish is my first language and I enjoy sharing what I know with others.  I was born and raised in a small town in Michoacán Mexico. I immigrated to the United States at the age of 12. I am very proud of my language, heritage, and culture. As an educator, I want to make a positive impact on future generations and be an example to other Hispanics and the public. Through my experience, I believe that it is valuable for each student to believe that they are not in a classroom to fill a desk, but that they are there with a higher purpose: to make a difference in this world. I believe that as an educator I will be able to contribute to other lives effectively.  

Noah Verboon, Lecturer in Spanish



I'm Noah Verboon, and I am a new Spanish Lecturer for CMLL. I studied Spanish and Russian literature for my bachelor's at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. I went on to study Hispanic linguistics focusing on language acquisition and heritage speakers at the University of Florida. I graduated with my master's in May of this year. I love being in the classroom and hope to grow my professional and academic career here at TTU.

Beyond academics, I like socializing with friends over coffee or sparkling water. I love taking road trips and sightseeing. I don't mind taking long walks on the beach, but I'd prefer to take a short walk to a pool hall. I enjoy learning languages, so I'm planning on getting back into Russian and Dutch and then picking up as many other languages as I can.

Paola Guerrero Rodríguez, Assistant Professor of Spanish, Director of the Spanish Heritage Language Program


Paola Guerrero Rodríguez is delighted to join CMLL as an Assistant Professor of Spanish and Director of the Spanish Heritage Language Program. She earned her Ph.D. in Hispanic Linguistics from the University of Florida in 2021. She specializes in the field of Spanish as a heritage language and is also interested in the power dynamics that impact language and in how the language classroom is a setting that can help stop perpetuating discriminatory discourses. Her publications explore emotions such as heritage language anxiety, pedagogical strategies to stop perpetuating discriminatory messages in a second and/or heritage language, and the dynamics of the heritage language classroom and mixed classroom. In her free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her family.

Classical & Modern Languages & Literatures

  • Address

    CMLL Building, 2906 18th St, Lubbock, TX 79409
  • Phone