This December, Dr. Clara Sotelo is retiring from a teaching career that has spanned the last 45 years, 23 of which have been at the University of Florida. Anyone who has passed through Dauer Hall in the past two-plus decades has surely interacted with Clara. She has taught all levels of Spanish language, literature and culture, and for several years she has coordinated the instructors working with Intermediate Spanish. Clara is a passionate teacher and a gifted administrator, as her students and colleagues will attest to. But upon learning of her retirement, we are reflecting also on all the other aspects of her life that we have come to appreciate, and which we will miss dearly. Clara is a lover of literature, a passionate advocate for social justice, a gifted singer and dancer (who can often be heard humming to herself as she sashays down the hall), a dedicated servant to our community, and a devoted lifelong learner, always eager to learn more, experience more, and do more. The world is a better place because of you, Clara, and we’re grateful for the time and talent you have given to SPS along the way. We wish you well in this next phase of your life!
“I hope I made a difference in the lives of some students, even if in a small way. I have kept in touch with several of them, some of whom are my friends today. I will never forget the ones who let me know the influence I have had on them, and those who have offered to visit me in Colombia, where I will retire to work for the environment.”