HISP Faculty Focus, April 2019: Dr. Luci Moreira

Photo credit: Daniel Delgado

After obtaining her B.A. in Portuguese from the Universidade Estadual de Maringá in Brazil, Dr. Luci Moreira went on to earn her M.A. in Linguistics from the Universidade Fedederal de Pernambuco, completed doctoral coursework in Portuguese at the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, and then she earned her Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign here in the U.S.

Since joining the College of Charleston in 2000, Professor Moreira has taught a myriad of courses for the Portuguese, Spanish, International Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies and Linguistics programs.  She also pioneered the online offering of Portuguese language in the spring of 2019, and she is co-author of  the Portuguese language textbook Ponto de Encontro, which has enjoyed widespread adoption across the U.S.

In addition to her constant work with the Portuguese program, Dr. Moreira has also collaborated in various projects both locally and nationally, to include co-founding the Department of Hispanic Studies’ newsletter HispaNews in 2001, and her ongoing role as Editor of the Portuguese Newsletter of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese.  Also in 2001, she initiated the department’s Portuguese Club, Bate-Papo Conversation Table, and the Portuguese Peer-Teacher program, which she still oversees today.  In the fall of 2017, she was also instrumental with the launch of her department’s newest program: the Portuguese and Brazilian Studies Minor.

With her colleague and loyal companion Jose, she has directed 11 study abroad programs in Brazil.  During these memorable trips to the Amazon,  students remember sleeping on a boat in hammocks, swimming with dolphins, visiting and dancing with indigenous groups, and snorkeling with baby sharks and green turtles in coral reefs of paradisiac Fernando de Noronha.

In Professor Moreira’s own words:

I chose to study Portuguese when I was 17 years old and it has always been my passion. I have always taught Portuguese, and I don’t see myself in a different profession or field. I am a firm believer that both language and culture can be taught at any level, and that they complement each other. I could not be happier than when the minor in Portuguese was established. This was not a work done alone, and started from writing petitions, committee proposals; a great deal of merit is due to the support of the Department Chair. This minor is the legacy that will be passed to the future.

Each year students from diverse backgrounds and expectations come to study Portuguese. We never repeat things because we don’t duplicate human souls and hearts. Whoever chooses the teaching career never does exactly the same thing and is always invigorated with the energy and the dreams of the most important ones—the students—those who inspire us. It is a good feeling to see the fruits of our labor in what we do.

Stay tuned for May 2019’s feature…

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