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Language Association

Press Release for the 2017 Michael Oates Teacher of Promise Awardee

19 Oct 2017 5:26 PM | Pamela Wesely

Des Moines, IA—The Iowa World Language Association (IWLA) is pleased to announce that the 2017 Michael Oates Teacher of Promise Award has been given to Monica Martinez, a Spanish language teacher at Ames High School in Ames, Iowa. This award is conferred annually on students in teacher training programs or in early stages of their careers who have shown exceptional promise and potential to become outstanding world language educators. The award presentation was held during the luncheon of the 2017 Iowa World Language Association Annual Conference at the Des Moines Downtown Marriott in Des Moines, IA on Friday, October 13th. 

Ms. Martinez grew up in Iowa born to Mexican parents speaking both Spanish and English, and she wrote in her essay about wanting to share her love and knowledge of the language with her students.  She chose to be a Spanish teacher because “it was the subject that she felt would make the greatest impact on her future students,” and “it was a subject that resonated close to her roots.”

Monica’s nominator described her as “embodying the caring, compassionate spirit for which Michael Oates is remembered.  These qualities, as well as her calm demeanor, pleasant affect, and sincere interest in students’ well-being, promise to make Monica not only an outstanding world language educator, but also a beloved teacher.”

About IWLA
The Iowa World Language Association (IWLA) represents the more than 1200 world language educators in the state from all levels of instruction and representing all languages. The Iowa World Language Association (IWLA) is devoted to advancing the worldwide mission of education and world languages, literature and culture by promoting the study of world languages and cultures, promoting language curricula, from primary to post-secondary levels, to enable students to become proficient in the target language, and opening the doors for multilingual interaction with other cultures. More information can be found at

Pictured: Monica Martinez, Linda Quinn Allen (IWLA Past President and Nominator)

© The Iowa World Language Association

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