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Meet Theresa Pesavento

December 9, 2011 by Lauren Kruse

Meet Theresa Pesavento, our Learning Technology Teaching Assistant!

It is likely that those who frequent Van Hise have already seen her friendly face in the halls or have had a chance to work with her, but we wanted to catch up with Theresa and get to know more.  Read our interview here:

LSS: Prior to working for LSS, you taught here as a language instructor, correct?

theresaTheresa: Yes, I’ve taught for a total of 11 years so far starting in college, teaching both French and ESL courses at the college level, including here at UW, but also at the elementary level.  Teaching is definitely one of my passions!  What some people may not know is that I also spent some time in Marketing and Advertising in Minneapolis before I started grad school.

LSS: Are there certain aspects you like about teaching the lower level versus upper level language?

theresaTheresa: Gosh, it really is hard to choose a favorite between the levels because the experiences are different between the two.  At the beginner level, students are experiencing the language for the first time, and you really get an opportunity to start them in a positive direction.  Games are always fun at that level, too!  However, at the higher levels, you get to incorporate more cultural elements and discussions, which are always important and interesting!

LSS: Yes, very true!  Being the Learning Technology Teaching Assistant, we know that this is not your only “job.”  Can you tell us about your dissertation?  How long have you been working on it?

theresaTheresa: My dissertation focuses on representations of medicine and medical discourse in AIDS memoirs in francopphone Africa. As for time, I’ve known that I wanted to research this topic since I was an undergrad, but I started writing my dissertation about three years ago. 

LSS: It’s always fascinating to hear about what other work our staff is doing!  Now on to Learning Support Services!  How has it been here so far, and what do you enjoy most?

theresaTheresa: It’s been great.  I love how many different roles this job encompasses and the extensive interaction I get to have with everyone!  Consulting, sharing ideas with others, and finding better ways to teach in the classroom are all things I enjoy about this job!  The constant feedback is always great, too. 

LSS: Have there been any challenges?

theresaTheresa: My main challenge has been limiting the interesting jobs I can do and containing my time!  It’s almost like there are so fun many projects I would want to start!

LSS: We're loving your Instructor Seminar series so far!  Was it hard to figure out what themes would be taught throughout the series? 

theresaTheresa: Actually, not too challenging.  I knew points and topics I wanted to emphasize, and then it was just figuring out the best way to present them.  I had a lot of the material ahead of time and the input and participation from the Academic Technology consultants.  This series has been very enjoyable for me!

LSS: Last question- how does it feel living in WI when you're from MN?  Are you a converted Cheesehead yet? 

theresaTheresa: Let me put it this way: I like the Packers, but I love the Vikings. Minnesota girl at heart :)

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