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The Office of International & Multicultural Studies assists faculty, students, and staff in developing and maintaining strong international and multicultural relationships; supports globally focused programs of study, service, and research; and creates strategic international partnerships with key institutions around the world.

BaldomeroBaldomero Lago: IMS Senior Director 

As the Sr. Director Dr. Lago oversees multicultural studies and global spotlight activities at Utah Valley University. Dr. Lago has dedicated his professional career as a professor of language pedagogy and has presented his teaching philosophy and research in Europe, the Americas and Asia. A native of Spain, Dr. Lago received his undergraduate and post graduate degrees in the US and returned to his home country to complete his doctoral degree in instructional technology. He is the chief editor of the Journal of Learning Styles, a member of the Board of Trustees at the Extremadura Business School in Spain and participates actively in many scientific committees of international organizations. Dr. Lago serves as the Honorary Consul of Spain since 1999 and is past-president of the Utah Consular Corps. He enjoys travelling and spending time with his family.

EmilyEmily D. Tooy: IMS Associate Director

I am a former educator. I was an EFL teacher for L’Education Nationale (The French Ministry of Education) in French Guiana, South America, from 2009 until 2013. I have also taught French in Fort Myers, Florida. During my time in South America, I worked for the Embassy of the United States in Paramaribo, Suriname, and was as an interpreter for the Gendermarie (French Military Police) in western French Guiana. In 2015 I left my teaching career for a career in higher education administration. 

I was raised in a bilingual home where BCS (Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian) was spoken. In addition to  French, I also speak two indigenous Amazonian languages: Sranan Tongo & Bushinengé Tongo (also known as Ndyuka or Aukaans).

My first great passion is that of language. My love of languages has lead me to live on three continents. Through my pursuit of foreign language acquisition, I have grown passionate about world cultures and standards of living. I am interested in political as well as entrepreneurial/economic corruption in both the developed and developing world. More specifically, civil & human rights violations, the rights of indigenous populations in the Amazon, the role of multinational corporations in developing countries, deforestation, and sustainability.

I am a proud native of Chicago, IL (go Sox), and new to the Beehive State. I love exploring the state of Utah with my wonderful son, Luka. I am currently pursuing a MSc in Global Technology & Development.


Bryan WaiteBryan R. Waite: Global & Multicultural Engagement Program Director

Dr. Waite has been teaching in the School of Education at UVU since 2007. He completed a PhD in Education in 2006 and prior to that a Master’s in Spanish Education at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Before Colorado he attended the University of Texas at Austin where he completed a BA in Spanish and minored in Business. His specialty is Multicultural Education and ESL/Bilingual Education. One of his many passions is being in the classroom with future and current teachers and engaging them in discussions of multicultural and multi-linguistic awareness.   

Dr. Waite is also the Program Director for Global/Intercultural Engagement at UVU. This position, which is in the Center for Global/Intercultural Engagement, gives him the distinct privilege of working with faculty and staff in issues of cultural diversity and inclusive pedagogy. 

He and his wife Katrina have 3 children, Mckinley, Lily, and Sophia.  When he is not in the classroom or on campus Dr. Waite loves being with his family.  They love the outdoors - camping, mt. biking, hiking, and lots of soccer.

 kelseyKelsey Thacker: Coordinator - Intercultural Academic Programs

Kelsey is excited to be a part of the International and Multicultural department here at UVU. She may not be from outside of the country, but she is in constant fascination and longing to be around the world. Kelsey holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance, which has exposed her to many languages and cultures, including Spanish, French, German, Czech, Italian, and Chinese (just to name a few!). Mrs. Thacker's role as the Coordinator of Intercultural Academic Programs will allow her to work with the International Intercultural Trip Coordinators as well as students, to ensure safety while traveling internationally. 

When she is not coordinating, she can be found on stage. Mrs. Thacker is a highly sought out voice teacher, music director, and audition coach. She has been seen on stage at UVU when she was a student in the School of Music (Opera, Opera Scenes, Chamber Choir, etc), as well as around Utah County in local community theater and opera productions.

alitAlit Makic: Marketing/Administrative Assistant

Cosmopolitan might be the best word to describe Alit Makic. He was raised in the former Republic of Yugoslavia, currently known as Serbia. Alit has always been a thrill seeker. After his boyhood he broadened his horizons while living in Belgium and France. He is fluent in more than five languages and enjoys the cultures therein. He has a Bachelor's degree in Business Management with an emphasis in Marketing from Brigham Young University-Idaho.

At Utah Valley University he performs a variety of duties. He assists the Sr. Director of the International and Multicultural Studies department, prepares and monitors the departmental financial transaction budgets and supplies, and follows several projects through successful completion. He is involved in graphic design creation, web management, marketing, advertising, publicity and campaign management for Global Spotlight Program and The New York Times Global Review to promote event awareness around the campus and local communities. Alit loves working with people and would love to one day become a successful professional and mentor. He is currently working on his MBA here at UVU.

William YocomWilliam Youcom: Student Marketing Assistant

I know web and Photoshop.







Alma Lopez 

Alma Lopez: Student Office Assistant

A short bio to follow shortly.