Gis-Xi joined Suffield’s Department of Languages as a Spanish teacher in 2005 and was appointed International Student Coordinator in 2018. She has lived, worked, and studied in Venezuela, Switzerland, and the United States and holds a degree in education and pedagogical sciences from Universidad Católica Andrés Bello [Venezuela]. She also earned a master’s degree in human resource development from Rochester Institute of Technology.
From the teaching world, Gis-Xi made a foray into a career in human resources—starting at Grupo G.A.N.B. in Caracas—before moving to the United States to attend RIT. In addition to teaching, Gis-Xi enjoys the company of family and friends and exploring other cultures when traveling.
Where were you born?
What do you love about where you are from?
The people - their generosity and hospitality. The weather/climate - 65-75 all year round. The beaches - Morrocoy, Mochima, Playa El Agua. The Amazon rainforest - la Gran Sabana, Canaima. The sand dunes - Coro. The capital - Caracas, where I grew up, and its beautiful Cerro El Avila. The traditions/celebrations. I could keep on and on!
If someone was traveling to where you are from for 24 hours, what would you recommend? What would you tell them to do/ where would you tell them to go?
Only 24 hrs?!?! There is so much to see and experience that is unique to Venezuela. This is a very hard question!
What do you love about where you live now?
About the U.S. - The freedom, safety, and stability that I no longer have in my country.
About Suffield - Its location: that the airport is 10 minutes away and that Boston and NYC are only a couple hours away. I'm a city girl who likes to travel so these are very important to me.
What is your favorite thing about day to day life at Suffield Academy?
The multiple roles I have which allow me to see my advisees and students not only as language learners in the classroom but as performers on stage, artists in the studio, athletes on the fields and courts, proctors in their dorms, mentors in their relationships with their peers, etc.
What is the first thing you do every morning when you get to work?
Look out my classroom's floor to ceiling window and see the BEAUTIFUL scenery throughout the changing seasons. It's like a new painting every day. 😍
Who is your favorite artist?
Who do you live on campus with?
I live with my husband and my two daughters.
Which of your roles at Suffield Academy do you relish the most?
I consider myself an educator and thus I relish all of my roles at Suffield, because in each role I have the opportunity to teach, advise, and help our students.
What is the favorite thing in your closet?
What is something you believe one can never over invest in?
Three things - travel, education, and time with family and friends
What is/are your prized possession(s)?
What is your favorite song of all time?
In English - “What I Am” by Eddie Brickell & The New Bohemians
In Spanish - “Tú” by Juan Luis Guerra y 4:40
If you could have dinner with one person, alive or dead, who would you dine with?
My father-in-law - I wish I could have met him.
Who is your role model?/ Inspiration?
I don't really have a role model, instead I have many people who inspire me every day - my family because they remind me of what is important in life, my high school friends because they are my example of strength, determination, courage, and how to have a good time, and my students because they motivate me to be the best teacher I can be and remind me every day why I love to teach.
If you could ask anyone for advice, who would you ask? (alive or dead)
I ask a lot of people for advice - it depends on the circumstances - family members, friends, colleagues, or students.
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Home - Venezuela. I have not been able to be back in nine years due to the political and economic crisis, social unrest, and the lack of safety. I wish my children could spend their summers there and see the beautiful country and wonderful people that I had the privilege to grow up seeing and sharing with.
What is your favorite food?
French food hands down! I could eat steak frites every day 😋