Rafael Arellano Executive Director, Founder and Spanish Instructor Rafael was born in Cuernavaca, México, the City of the Eternal Spring. He started teaching Spanish when he was 16 years old and is still doing it at Edúcate Ya. He received a BA in Pastoral Ministries from Marylhurst University, and did his graduate studies in Theology at Mt. Angel. He has been an advocate for education among Latinos, has offered opportunities for those that are interested in learning Spanish and about Latino cultures, and has provided the opportunity to study abroad. He has a MA in Spanish Literature and has taught in four community colleges in the Portland area. He is the founder and executive director of Educate Ya.
Daniel Alfaro Blanco Executive Assistant and Academic Coordinator
Dixon Bourne Event Coordinator He/him ¡ Hola hola ! I’m Dixon from California. I began my career as an accountant after obtaining a degree in economics. That didn’t stick. After traveling around the world with a surfboard under my arm, I’m glad to have settled down in Portland as Educate Ya’s event coordinator and facilities manager. I love this city despite its distance from the waves, and I’m stoked to foster its cultural diversity. I am currently learning Spanish (me estoy calentando) and learning how to teach English too. Reach out with any questions about our events!
Jake Clark He/him Intercambio & ESL Classes Coordinator
I am originally from the state of South Dakota and lived in Portland now for 10 years. As a really young child, I used Spanish to speak with my great-grandmother who came to the States from Spain. She passed away when I was still in elementary school, and I suddenly had no one to speak Spanish with and lost my ability to use it until I relearned it in my early 20s. I gained my passion for languages and travel through my relationship with her, which eventually turned into studying languages as a personal hobby. In 2022, I got my undergraduate degree from Portland State University in applied linguistics and also earned certification to teach ESL. Languages are not only fascinating, but are of course tools that allow a person to broadly communicate within a community and open up all sorts of possibilities. As a teacher, I love being able to help others in their language learning journey. Other than languages, I also am an avid reader and spend a lot of time playing music
Ilse Estela Reyes Recycling Educators Program Coordinator Hola!! My name is Ilse Estela Reyes Medina and I have been the coordinator of the Recycling Educators program at Edúcate Ya since 2023. As the coordinator of the program, my goal is to lead educational initiatives that promote conservation efforts in the Spanish-speaking community of Portland. Prior to this, I worked as an operations manager and guide for sportfishing charters and eco tours in the Sea of Cortez, Mexico where I applied my bilingual skills and focused on educating about sustainable practices in the ocean. I earned my bachelor's and master's degrees in Marine Biology and Marine and Coastal Sciences, respectively, from the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California Sur, Mexico. I am excited to bring my experience and passion for environmental education to this role and look forward to making a positive impact in the community!
Erin Law (she/they) Grant Writer Health Educators Program Coordinator
Originally from New York, I’ve called Portland home for 15+ years. My background is in environmental conservation and nonprofit management. I have a graduate degree in Environmental Policy and Conservation from the University of Michigan. In my 20s, I lived and worked in Chile’s coastal mountain range south of Concepción and then traveled in Argentina, Uruguay, Perú, Bolivia, and later Costa Rica. In graduate school, I spent time in the Mexican state of Chiapas, learning about fair-trade coffee cooperatives in Zapatista communities. Recently, I have led ecotours to the state of Yucatán in México and the Amazon region of Perú. I am honored to work at Edúcate Ya and am dedicated to empowering the Latinx community through our programs.
Elizabeth Spanish/Italian Teacher All levels Grammar Hi, I´m a native Spanish speaker. I was born in Mexico, City, and I studied Italian Literature & Language at UNAM. I love to teach, and for that, I studied a course in Didactic at Università per Stranieri in Siena, Italy, and after a Master in Competency-Based Education. I taught Italian and Spanish for 15 years at the university UNAM, and now I’m here in Portland Oregon to share with you all my Spanish and Italian language, my experience, and my Latin culture. Gracias!!! Elizabeth.
Jake Clark ESL All levels Grammar/ Spanish Pronouns: he/him/his Languages Spoken: English, Spanish
Rafael Arellano Spanish All levels Grammar
200 NE 20th Ave, Suite 10 Portland, OR 97232
What Our Clients Are Saying
"EducateYa is a wonderful community place where I had the privilege to teach English to Spanish speakers in Portland. My students came from Hillsboro and drove all the way into town because the methods EducateYa used are so successful. The management at EducateYa, including Rafael Arellano-Barrera are encouraging to all teachers and students to learn, experiment and grow. I highly recommend EducateYa for its mission statement and principles to make everyone in the U.S. bilingual. Yes!" Nana Nash
"Educate Ya, is an amazing place to learn and build community in the Portland area."
Great school. Super teachers Well worth my drive from Vancouver. Tried another Portland school and Educate Ya was hands down better. Barbara Harmon
Te ayuda si estas buscando traducir documentos y tambien a llenar documentos, si tu no sabes Ingles ellos te ayudan mucho! Ivis Amaya