In 2013, Paola Bianco Sobejano, Ph.D., associate professor of foreign languages at Wilkes University, has published Conversando con literatura. Intended for advanced university Spanish language students, Conversando con literatura includes poetry, short stories and songs from a vast selection of Hispanic writers. The book is published by Panda Publications, a Wilkes-Barre, Pa.,-based publishing company founded and run by university professors.
In March 2002 Dr. Paola Bianco was appointed coordinator of the study abroad program. Since then, studying abroad has become a common option for Wilkes students, many of whom are studying in Spain, Japan, Australia, England and Peru.
“When you study abroad it is not just about learning a language; you can stay with your particular focus and major,” said Dr. Bianco. “Any area of study that is compatible to Wilkes University’s curriculum can be studied abroad. The credits will transfer, and you can still receive financial aid. “
Dr. Bianco has taught at Wilkes since 1996 and fluently speaks, reads and writes English, Spanish, Italian and French. Prior to joining Wilkes, Dr. Bianco served as an Intermediate Italian Coordinator at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and she served as the Study Abroad Program Coordinator and Assistant Director at the Lorenzo de’ Medici Institute in Florence, Italy, while attaining her PhD. in Romance Languages.
Dr. Bianco believes that studying abroad is a tremendous learning experience. “You can only learn so much about different cultures through a book. To see the culture in person, to experience it, to learn about a country by studying there is invaluable,” said Dr. Bianco. “Studying abroad makes you stronger as a person, and helps you to learn about your strengths and weaknesses, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of our country.”
In Dr. Bianco's words...
“I enjoy the environment that is created between the faculty and the students the most at Wilkes.”
“ The student body is very motivated with an interest to learn. They are conscientious, responsible, and reliable. They always want to achieve more that what is asked of them, and they are really well rounded.”
LANGUAGES: Fluency in speaking, reading and writing English, Spanish, Italian and French.
ACADEMIC EXPERIENCE Associate Professor. Intermediate, Advanced levels in Spanish. Advanced Conversation, Culture and Civilization of Spain,
Medical Spanish (Spanish for Health and Social Sciences), Golden Age Poetry, Syntax and Advanced Grammar, Political Systems of Latin American countries, Latin American Civilization and Culture, Hispanic Short Stories, Feminist Perspectives of Latina Writers, Pedagogical Methods in Foreign Language Teaching, Critical Introduction to Spanish American Literature, Latino Issues Through Hispanic Films.
Created and Designed a new course Spanish 212; Non-Literary Translation. Wilkes University, Wilkes Barre, PA.
Teaching Assistant in Elementary and Intermediate Italian
1991 to 1996 Intermediate Spanish, Fall 1995 Intermediate Italian Coordinator, 1992, 1993 and 1995
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC.
Study Abroad coordinator, Wilkes University
2002 to present
Lorenzo de' Medici Institute, Florence, Italy
Study Abroad Program Coordinator and Assistant Director - 1994-1995
Fall 1995 - Spring 1996 Assist the Study Abroad office at UNC-Chapel Hill withrecruitment of students and with orientation and counseling before departure.
CONFERENCES: Annual Romance Languages and Literatures Conference at State
PAPERS DELIVERED: University of Binghamton. . Presented papers every year 2000-2008.
“Identidad femenina en ‘El árbol’ de María Luisa Bombal” in the 10th Annual Conference of The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, SUNY, Binghamton, March 5-6, 1999.
“Componente scientifica nella poesia di Bonaviri”.South Atlantic Modern Languages Association. November 5-6, 1998. Atlanta, Georgia.
“Dimensione socio-politica nella poesia di Bartolo Cattafi.”South Atlantic Modern Languages Association. November 13-15, 1997. Atlanta, Georgia.
“Alienación en la estructura y temática en `El árbol'. " Literature as Social Critique. University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill. 22-24 February 1996.
"Carattere e comportamento della donna della brigata."South Atlantic Modern Languages Association. 8-10 November 1996. Savannah, Georgia.
ORGANIZER, CHAIR: Chair, organizer of the Annual Romance Languages and LiteraturesConferences, 2000-2008.
Chair of “Asian Reception of Italian Renaissance” - American Association of Italian Studies (AAIS) - April 19-22, 2001. Philadelphia, PA
Chair, organizer, abstract reviewer for “Latin American Modern and Post-Modern Appropriations of Time.” 12th Annual Conference of The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, SUNY, Binghamton, March 23-24, 2001.
Chair, organizer, abstract reviewer for “Gendered Identities of Chicana and Latina Women Artists.” 11th Annual Conference of The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, SUNY, Binghamton, March 10-11, 2000.
Chair for “Notions of Subjectivity in Spanish Narrative and Film.”
10th Annual Conference of The Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, SUNY, Binghamton, March 5-6, 1999.
Chair, organizer, abstract reviewer for American Association of Italian Studies at the SAMLA convention, 1998 and 1999. Contemporary Italian Literature.
INTERPRETER: Spanish into English and English into Spanish interpreter for the Luzerne
TRANSLATOR: County Courthouse.
Italian and Spanish to English and English into Spanish and Italian for firms, agencies, health centers. 1986 to present.
LECTURES: Guest speaker. Spanish Honors Society. Meyers High School, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. May 2005.
Guest speaker. “Italian Everyday Lifestyle." Hazleton Public Library, Hazleton, PA, April 1999.
Guest speaker. “Latino Culture and Identity in Unites States.” WilkesUniversity, March, 1998.
Presentation: “Three Cultures in Latin America” for the Multicultural Awareness Week during the Hispanic Heritage Month.Wilkes University, Wilkes-Barre. September 1997.
Lecture: "Italian Diet and Eating Habits" for the Nutrition Dept. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. October 1995
PROFESSIONAL SERVICES: Wilkes University-Faculty Liaison for the “Advanced Placement Summer Institute” for Spanish, 2000, 2001 .