The Dante Alighieri Society of British Columbia

 For the promotion of Italian language and culture

For more information, please call 604 682 1410, visit our partners' website  or write school@iccbc.com

CECILIA FOGLIA
I was born and raised in Italy, in the Marche Region, where I also studied Modern and Euro-American Literatures and Languages at the University of Macerata.

After serving as a Language Tutor and Teacher in both private and public schools and working as a professional translator and interpreter for the DPA - Department for Antidrug Policies - Presidency of the Council of Ministers in Rome, I decided to undergo a PhD program in Translation Studies at the University of Montreal (Quebec, Canada).

In Montreal, I had the chance to teach Italian as a second language to manifold passionate second and third generations of Italian immigrants. This helped me fall in love with my beautiful culture and language for the second time.

Life then took me to Denver (Colorado, USA) for one year and there, I kept on teaching Italian and translating for the Italian community. Since September 2018, I have been living in Vancouver. I am so glad to have found such a vibrant community very fond of the Italian culture.

Since I was a child, I dreamt of living abroad and discovering new cultures, all while keeping practicing my native language and sharing my own traditions and habits with others. When I teach Italian, I feel I can travel back to my home country, share its hidden treasures and unfold its cultural and linguistic mysteries. I like to think about my students as “close travelers” I share this journey with.

photo by M. Giannoccaro

SILVIA MILICIA

I was born and raised in Northern Italy (Novara - Piedmont).


My love for languages began at a very young age, when contrarily to all my peers, I decided to study French instead of English. I eventually added the latter as a third language in High School, and then Russian in University. I hold a Master's Degree in Translation from the University of Genoa and languages have always been the core of my everyday life.


I love helping people overcome language barriers and successfully communicate, and I do that through both my profession as a translator and as a teacher. What I love about teaching is that it allows me to learn a lot about other cultures, while sharing the love I feel for mine.


CINZIA CANDELA
I was born in Varese, a city in the region of Lombardy, Northern Italy. For many years, I lived in Verona, in the middle of the Po Valley; the origins of my family are from Trapani, Sicily. As you can see, I am really, thoroughly Italian! 

In Milan, I studied Broadcasting and Journalism, and thereafter I designed and conducted various radio and television programs throughout the country. 

For over 20 years, I have been learning Phonetics that improves and enriches the sounds of our wonderful Lingua italiana. Hence, I created "Modulavoce", a method that helps both professionals and amateurs to better develop their voice potential. 

I am a Knight of Light for Lions Club - so named at the historical La Capitanata Library in Foggia, where I volunteered as a book reader for people with vision impairment. I still volunteer on a regular basis, not to feel proud of it. I just do it.

I chose to live in Vancouver where, to my surprise, I found a great interest in the Italian language and its culture. At Dante Italian Language School, I proposed the courses "Italian Sounds good!" - Phonetics & Pronunciation,

and “A Taste of Opera” - Operatic Italian, as well as a series of short courses focused on the Italian Arts. 

Since June 2019, I have been in charge of coordinating the Italian Book Club.

I have a passion for writing and as soon as I am inspired, I write short stories that sometimes become theatrical pieces. 

I have a strong curiosity for Culture, Beauty, Art. I especially love People and that is why I have many friends.


Our instructors

SILVIA GIABARDO - Teaching Coordinator and Instructor
I was born and raised in Italy, in the Veneto region, and studied in Venice at Ca’ Foscari University, majoring in Foreign Languages and Literatures.

Life took me many places before I settled in Vancouver, Canada. I have taught Italian as a second language for over 25 years: in San Francisco, Florence, at UBC Continuing Studies and at the former Italian Institute of Culture in Vancouver, among others. Besides being an instructor of Italian language, I also work as Teaching Coordinator at the Dante Italian Language School.


So many stories and unforgettable experiences have come to me through my teaching. Throughout my career as a language instructor, I have emphasized a multidisciplinary approach, focusing on the ever-evolving everyday contexts of Italy. My aim, whatever the level of instruction, is to promote understanding of the current aspects of life, culture, travel in Italy. With my students, I have always tried to impart knowledge of and ability in the language, while sharing direct experiences of Italy and what it is to be Italian and be amongst Italians. A special flair, an atmosphere, a taste, a sound, a gesture: a new and vibrant world that opens up when you learn our language.


Teaching Italian is my passion. Let us take up this unique adventure together! Arrivederci a presto!

SONIA DEL TORTO

I was born in the small region of Molise and then moved to the north of Italy (Emilia-Romagna) at the age of 19. There I obtained my Master's degree in International Cooperation and Protection of Human Rights. I discovered the passion for teaching while working as Assistant Grant Writer in an NGO in Greece. There I started to teach Italian to young refugees and to hold seminars about human rights in high schools and other non-formal educational settings. Once back in Italy, I continued to teach Italian to migrants and I started to study at Università per Stranieri di Siena.

Furthermore, as a Grant Writer, I had the chance to promote inclusion and diversity in the education system, thanks to proposals I made in the areas of Youth and Children, Disabled people, Education and Social Services. I proposed strategies for parents, teachers and community workers to confront educational poverty in disadvantaged backgrounds, introducing intercultural teaching practices with the help of cultural-linguistic mediators.


To me teaching holds so many invaluable meanings: it is turning into success the potential that every student has; it is understanding our communities to build better ones; it is a life-learning process thanks to the engagement with students from different backgrounds; it is falling in love every time with the Italian culture.


LUDOVICA SOLERI
I was born and raised in Milan where I studied International Law at the Catholic University of Milan, and took a Fundraising and Cooperation course at ISPI (Institute for Studies of International Policy).

My first passion is theatre and I have worked for several years in the field.

In the last few years I worked in Milan in different NGOs helping overcome cultural diversity conflicts and volunteered as a social and legal assistant for inmates.
 
I love to travel around the world, learn new languages and experience new cultures.

In mid 2018 I moved to Vancouver where I started teaching the Italian Language at various institutions. I discovered my love for teaching while sharing the wonderful Italian culture and language.


I am very passionate about the Italian heritage and its arts. I love to help others explore new scenarios and new skills/talents and I am always keen on a good challenge.