Listen to Episode 2 of The Book Boat Podcast

SJSU Lurie College of Education alumni Alejandra Valencia (MA/Multiple Subject Credential Program) and Jocelyn Rodriguez (MA/Multiple Subject Credential Program) have released the second episode of their podcast, The Book Boat!  In this episode, 1st Week of School, they discuss possible books and activities to begin the school year with.  Get connected to future episodes and content on YouTubeAnchorApple PodcastsSpotify, or Instagram.


Welcome (Back), Lurie College Students!

Hi! I’m Heather Lattimer, Dean of the Lurie College of Education, and I’m delighted to welcome you to SJSU for the Fall 2020 semester.

Although circumstances prevent us from being able to be able to greet you in person and learn together on campus this fall, we want you to know that we are 100% here to support your success. Our faculty and staff have spent significant time over the summer making plans to ensure that you will have high-quality learning experiences in your courses, fieldwork, and co-curricular activities. We’re excited about the plans that are in place for interactive, relevant, and responsive learning opportunities here at Lurie College in the coming semester.

This summer, we saw calls for racial justice reverberate around the country and throughout our community in response to the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery. As a college of education, we are committed to equitable, anti-racist policies and practices and to preparing transformative educators, counselors, therapists, school and community leaders.

Over the past three months, our faculty and staff have engaged in hard conversations as we examine the racism and bias that persist in our own systems and structures, and work to reform the way in which we engage with each other, our students, and the larger educational ecosystem. During the coming semester, we’ll be eliciting your input on how we can better live our mission and our values. Please look for invitations to participate in the Deans’ racial justice and educational equity student advisory group. We hope you’ll join us.

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Apply to Co-Host Emancipatory Education Now

Emancipatory Education Now is a new student-led initiative at the SJSU Lurie College of Education that examines what emancipatory education – the critical evaluation of the systems and structures of oppression that maintain the status quo in our educational institutions – looks like in today’s society and advocates for the expansion of emancipatory education research, policies, and practices!

Student co-hosts from across Lurie College’s academic programs will meet regularly throughout the fall semester to engage in dialogue about critical topics in education and share those thoughts out with the Lurie College, SJSU, and local community.  Co-hosts will be compensated hourly for their participation and receive a high-quality USB microphone.

All current SJSU Lurie College of Education students are eligible to apply.  Watch the video tutorial below for information about how to complete this Google form by Saturday, August 22, to apply to become a co-host.

Communicative Disorders & Sciences Department Awarded $333k Grant

Congratulations to our Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences, who earned a $333,000 grant from the CSU Chancellor’s Office earlier this year!  This grant couldn’t have come at a better time as there are so many priorities that have arisen in recent months in response to shortages of speech-language pathologists and audiologists, the impact of COVID-19, and ongoing acts of racial injustice.  We spoke with Department Chair Nidhi Mahendra to learn more about the grant and the impact it will have on the Communicative Disorders & Sciences program and beyond – listen to or read through the interview with Dr. Mahendra below.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Department of Communicative Disorders and Sciences CSU Grant

“COVID has really upended the way we trained and did clinical practica for our students in the graduate and undergraduate programs, and having this pot of money has allowed us to very quickly move to spending on student memberships in a simulation platform and look at how we might use this as a resource to look at online platforms for clinical observation and telepractice resources.”

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Spring 2020 Lurie College Alumni Launch The Book Boat Podcast

Shoutout to SJSU Lurie College of Education alumni, Alejandra Valencia (MA/Multiple Subject Credential Program) and Jocelyn Rodriguez (MA/Multiple Subject Credential Program), who recently took their love for books, literacy, education, and social justice, and turned it into their podcast, The Book Boat!  Watch their first episode, Our Beginning, below and get connected to future episodes and content on YouTube, Anchor, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or Instagram.

Lurie College Learning Showcase | Briettny Curtner

During the Spring 2020 transition to remote teaching and learning, we asked a handful of our Lurie College students to share their insights on learning as they relate to our priority areas – community-engaged, culturally sustaining, interdisciplinary, and holistic. Learn more about Briettny Curtner, an SJSU alumni, current graduate student, and the Project Coordinator for the Faces of Learning project. In this video, Briettny highlights some culturally sustaining initiatives and support services in the Lurie College of Education.

Watch all of the student features and view some additional course features from our Lurie College Learning Showcase at

Connect with Lurie College at to receive more news about academic and student life!  Video edited by Sydney Ahmadian.

Lurie College Alumni Named Watsonville High School Principal

Congratulations to Department of Educational Leadership alumni Maria Clara Fernandez, who was recently named principal of Watsonville High School!  We’re excited for Maria to take on a leadership role in the Pajaro Valley Unified School District during this pivotal moment in our society.  Read the full announcement at


Student Spotlight | Clarissa Johnston

Learn about Clarissa Johnston, recent alumni of the moderate-severe credential program in the Department of Special Education at the SJSU Lurie College of Education. Clarissa was also recognized as the Teacher of the Year of her school, Ryan STEAM Academy, and her school district, Alum Rock Union School District, for the 2019-2020 academic year!

Connect with Lurie College at to receive more news about academic and student life. Video and audio recorded by Brian Cheung Dooley. “Storybook” provided royalty-free by Scott Holmes.

Ask Me Anything – with CD&S Professor, Paul Cascella

This summer, professors from the SJSU Lurie College Departments of Child & Adolescent Development and Communicative Disorders & Sciences will be joining us in conversation and community.  You can learn a little about their background, what inspired them to teach, and ask all of your questions about life at the Lurie College of Education and beyond.  On Tuesday, July 21, at 2pm, chat with Dr. Paul Cascella, Professor in the Department of Communiciative Disorders & Sciences.  Register today to receive a Zoom link for this workshop!

SJSU Lurie College of Education Communicative Disorders and Sciences Department Faculty Paul Cascella

Statement from Dean Heather Lattimer and Associate Dean Marcos Pizarro | July 13, 2020

Dear Lurie College of Education Students,

We hope you each are taking care of yourselves and your loved ones.  It has been an intense few months for all of us.  The protests and calls for addressing institutional anti-black racism and white supremacy have inspired SJSU and the Lurie College of Education to dedicate resources and significant energy towards taking our work for racial justice and equity to a deeper level.  We want to share what we are envisioning for the new year that we hope you will be involved in:

  1. First of all, we want to hear from you, current students and recent alumni, with your ideas, needs, and priorities: we will hold a college-wide forum, you can reach out to us directly, you can share anonymously via this Google form, and departments will also provide program-specific opportunities for your input. 
  2. We are working with faculty and staff to confront all the different forms and manifestations of racism that have dominated higher education for far too long.  We will identify and address the language, norms, policies, practices as well as the underlying thinking and ideologies that perpetuate racism and oppression within our college, departments, and programs.  One specific example will be to increase access of historically under-represented students to Lurie College programs by rethinking admission requirements to reflect a holistic assessment of applicants’ potential and strengths rather than an over-reliance on standardized tests.
  3. We will emphasize and grow existing and newly created opportunities to both learn about and engage in racial justice work, including:
    • a) an anti-racist Inquiry to Action Group (ITAG) that will build on key racial justice readings;
    • b) film discussion groups that will similarly use innovative racial justice themed films to explore how we can build on their insights through actions in our daily lives and collective work as a college;
    • c) launching the newest program in the college, the MA in Emancipatory School Leadership program, which will be a training ground for principals and other school leaders to do innovative equity work in our surrounding schools;
    • d) an Ethnic Studies Residency Program in East Side Union High School District where teacher candidates in secondary social science will be trained to implement transformative approaches to ethnic studies to enhance engagement and success of students of Color;
    • e) the Impact San Jose fellowship, which provides mentorship and scholarships for those dedicated to working in historically underserved communities in the San Jose area;
    • f) the Lurie College Promise Group, which supports first-generation college students to achieve success as undergrads and beyond;
    • g) including students in shaping the vision for the college through the Strategic Plan work and other leadership initiatives;
  4. Through our Student Success Center, we are also building a support network with one-on-one and group opportunities for those struggling with the realities of our past and on-going personal experiences with racism, as we create pathways for collective efforts to confront and upend the ways in which our own programs and SJSU as an institution have perpetuated inequities.
  5. We are developing a resource guide to support the entire Lurie College community in our own learning to become racial justice educators, advocates and leaders because we see this as essential to our lifelong commitment to work for justice and equity through our learning, teaching, counseling, mentorship and advocacy.  More details on this will be shared soon.

It is our collective responsibility to actively engage in anti-racist work through our daily lives as educators, counselors, therapists, school and community leaders.  Lurie College is committed to growing in this work and supporting all members of the college in being fierce anti-racist advocates.  Please reach out to us with ideas, needs, suggestions, concerns or if you need any support in pursuing our shared goals for racial justice and equity, and feel free to use this anonymous Google form to give us feedback.

In Solidarity –

Marcos Pizarro, Associate Dean –
Heather Lattimer, Dean –

Student Spotlight | Joanna Gaeta and Samuel Bland

The SJSU Lurie College of Education provides a range of opportunities to support students in their academic endeavors to become transformative educators, counselors, therapists, and leaders.  We spoke with our Special Education Department graduate students Joanna Gaeta and Samuel Bland, who were able to collaborate with Assistant Professor Saili Kulkarni on a research project that examines beliefs about disability and race among special education teachers of color.  Listen to Joanna and Samuel’s insights below!

SJSU Lurie College of Education Special Education Department Students Joanna Gaeta and Samuel Bland

“We are currently working on studying special education teachers of color and what their beliefs are about disability and race.  We’re trying to see how do teachers position themselves to help out our students when we see disparities – whether it’s behavioral issues or academic issues within the school setting – and then how we as the special education teachers contend with that on the education front.”

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Student Spotlight | Critical Bilingual Authorization Pathway

The SJSU Lurie College of Education provides a range of grants to students to support their academic endeavors to become transformative educators, counselors, therapists, and leaders.  We spoke with SJSU Lurie College of Education Critical Bilingual Authorization Pathway (CBAP) students Adriana Priego, Heather Simonovich, Jazmin Mendez, Olivier Castañeda, Raul Leon, Rubby Barajas, and Stephanie Muñoz, who received grants to pursue various professional development initiatives.  Listen to their insights below about how they adjusted their focus in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.  More information about the pathway, Bilingüismo y Justicia, is available at

SJSU Lurie College of Education Critical Bilingual Authorization Program CBAP Podcast

“Even when students are coming in now, students are just recently applying to the credential program are calling me – because I had them in classes in my undergrad – and asking me, ‘What do you think about this bilingual program? Or what do you think about me going into the credential program?’  I’ve said, ‘Definitely apply for a credential program and also apply for the bilingual program’ because … I had three job offers for three bilingual schools and I had to pick what school I wanted to go to and what worked best for my family.  It was because of this program, that I was able to get job offers that prepared me for the future.”

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SJSU Early Childhood Student-Alumni Network (ESAN) & Summer Film Series

The purpose of ESAN is to create an interdisciplinary group of current pre-service San Jose State University students and alumni working in the Early Childhood field and engage students in the Early Childhood Institute’s mission of supporting each and every child from the start. In this video, Lurie College student / ESAN President Julia Doan and Lurie College faculty / ESAN Advisor Andrea Golloher discuss their organization and their Lurie College Summer Film Series discussion.

ESAN is also hosting a discussion about The Raising of America: Early Childhood and the Future of Our Nation on Wed., Jul. 1, 5pm.  To receive to join the discussion, register via this Google form.  To get connected with ESAN, email

For more information about the Early Childhood Institute, visit For more information about the Lurie College Student Organizations, visit

Student Spotlight: Erin Enguero

Learn about Erin Enguero, an SJSU alumni and current credential student in the Teacher Education – Multiple Subject program at the SJSU Lurie College of Education.  Erin was also the recipient of the Dean’s Scholarship for Exemplary Teachers for the 2019-2020 academic year!

Connect with Lurie College at to receive more news about academic and student life!  Video recorded by Brian Cheung Dooley and edited by Sydney Ahmadian. Music by Chris Haugen.

Free Graduate Courses in Emancipatory School Leadership

This July, the SJSU Lurie College is launching our new Emancipatory School Leadership MA Program.  The program has particular resonance as we grapple individually and collectively with issues of institutional racism and structural inequity in the wake of the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery.  Given this urgency, we are offering both of the program’s online summer courses (July 6 – August 7) through SJSU’s Open University free of charge.  If, after two weeks of active participation in the course, students are interested in joining the cohort, they may apply to the program at no cost.  If accepted, they would be able to transfer the units towards the MA and continue with the cohort in the Fall semester (also online).  If interested, please complete this preliminary application or contact Dr. Rebeca Burciaga.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Ed.D Leadership Program Students

Opportunities for Early Childhood Connections

SJSU Associated Students Child Development Center

If you are passionate about helping young children, under age 5, reach their full potential, here are two chances to connect with your early childhood people this summer and beyond. These opportunities are open to anyone interested in working with young children – as a teacher, therapist, counselor, program director, or any of the other professions committed to young children.

Apply for Early Childhood Connections to get together and cultivate relationships with current students and Spring 2020 graduates from across SJSU Lurie College of Education programs who share career goals related to early childhood. You will engage in six (online for now) networking meetings, starting in August, to build community, learn from alumni and other professionals already in the field, and build your path as you pursue a career involving young children. Participants will have a chance to shape the program as it unfolds, from August 2020 to April 2021 and will earn a $200 stipend for their commitment. Supported by the LCOE and the SJSU Early Childhood Institute, this is an opportunity to learn, grow, lead and most importantly, connect! Questions? Email us at

Join the Early Childhood Student Alumni Network, a recognized student group that is building a broader interdisciplinary network of current San Jose State University students interested in working with young children and alumni currently in the field.

Whether you are graduating this spring or continuing on in your journey through SJSU, we hope one or both of these opportunities is right for you!

Spring and Summer 2020 Ed.D. Leadership Program Dissertation Defenses

SJSU Lurie College of Education EdD Leadership Program Cohort 4 Costa Rica

Students from the fourth cohort of the Lurie College Ed.D. Leadership program are defending their dissertations during the Spring 2020 semester.  Learn more about each of their dissertations below.  Dissertation defenses are open to the public and are currently being held via Zoom. If you would like to attend the defense, please email your request to

Past Dissertation Defenses

Angela Lyte-Crowther | Wed., Mar. 18, 10am

“Understanding the Barriers, Bridges, and Bases to Inclusion Instruction for Secondary Students with Mild to Moderate Disabilities”

The purpose of this multi-method research was to gather and analysis site administrator and teachers’ opinions on the barriers, bridges, and bases needed for the furtherance of inclusion practices and the elimination of the segregated classrooms for students with mild -moderate disabilities.

Committee: Dr. Senorina Reis, Dr. Roxana Marachi, Dr. Demerris Brooks, and Dr. Matthew Love

Laura M. Shroder | Fri., Mar. 27, 12:30pm

“The Role of Socioeconomic Status and Prior Industry Exposure on the Attitudes, Career Goals, and Career Decision Self-Efficacy of Undergraduates Studying Hospitality and Tourism Management”

This quantitative study explored hospitality students’ socioeconomic status, prior industry exposure, and demographics related to attitudes, career goals, and career decision self-efficacy. Varied results have implications for the education of hospitality students and the industry.

Committee: Dr. Paul Cascella, Dr. Robin Love, Dr. Andrew Feinstein, and Dr. Susan Roe

Heidi Schmidt Emberling | Tue., Mar. 31, 1pm

“How Does Alignment Between Policymakers and the General Public Affect Expansion and Improvement of High-Quality Childcare/Preschool in California?”

This mixed methods study examines specific factors that impede or interfere with expansion and improvement of high-quality early care and education programs and services in California, as well as identifies potential solutions, with a specific focus on alignment between policymakers and the general public.

Committee: Dr. Emily Slusser, Dr. Amy Leisenring, Dr. Arnold Danzig

Prabhjot Singh | Tue., Apr. 7, 11am

“Examining the Effects of a Peer-Mediated Social Skills Intervention on the Prosocial Behaviors of Elementary Students with Emotional Behavioral Disorders”

The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of a peer-mediated social skills intervention on fourth and fifth grade students, aged 9, 10, and 11 with EBD in a public-school setting. The current study proposes to explicitly teach students the target social skills of sharing, compliment giving, and sportsmanship using modeling, role-play, and discussion with feedback.

Committee: Dr. Lisa Simpson, Dr. Peg Hughes, Trudy Gross

Angela Maria Rengifo | Wed., Apr. 8, 10am

“The impact of the language of instruction on second grade Latinx Emergent Bilinguals’ understanding of place value in two Spanish-English bilingual classrooms. An Exploratory Study”

This mixed methods study examines whether and how the language of instruction impacts second grade Latinx Emergent Bilingual students’ understanding of place value and their communication patterns around this mathematical concept in two Spanish-English transitional bilingual classrooms.

Committee: Dr. Cheryl Roddick, Dr. Allison Briceno, Dr. Delnaz Hosseini

Jennifer Gee Huei Wang | Wed., Apr. 8, 3:30pm

“Developing Teachers’ TPaCK with Design Thinking and Community of Practice”

This study examines whether and how the self-selected K-5 teachers in a suburban elementary school in California demonstrated TPaCK in the integration of instructional technologies when they engage in a community of practice structured around design thinking.

Committee: Dr. Mark K. Felton, Dr. Lara Ervin-Kassab, Dr. Joe McCreary

Tri Nguyen | Wed., May 13, 2pm

“Construction of Classroom Community in a Full Inclusion District: Comparative Case Studies with Elementary School Teachers”

The qualitative comparative case study focused on the teachers’ behaviors to structure and maintain an environment of inclusion, care, and belonging. The significant findings of the study indicated that teacher’s intention impacts the classroom environment, teacher encouragement affects student participation, and teacher’s design of the classroom environment facilitate conditions of learning.

Committee: Dr. Allison Briceno (Chair), Dr. Andrea Golloher, Dr. Michael Gallagher

Sonia Vargas | Wed., Jun. 17, 11am

“Exploring The Deleterious Connection Between Traditional School Discipline Practices And Male Latino Students Who Have Endured Adverse Childhood Experiences: An Exploratory Study In North California”

This exploratory study utilizes a video documentary film design to examine the damaging connection between traditional school discipline practices and male Latino students who have endured adverse childhood experiences in northern California.

Committee: Dr. Robert Gliner, Dr. Senorina Mendoza Reis, Dr. Victoria Tarumoto-Wallace

Student Spotlight | Cristian Ponce

Learn about Cristian Ponce, an alumni credential student in the Teacher Education – Multiple Subject program at the SJSU Lurie College of Education. Cristian was also the recipient of the Emily Devore and Mabel Crumby Endowment for the 2019-2020 academic year!

Connect with Lurie College at to receive more news about academic and student life! Video recorded by Brian Cheung Dooley and Sydney Ahmadian and edited by Sydney Ahmadian. Music by RAGE.

Statement from Dean Heather Lattimer | June 2, 2020

Last week’s murder of an unarmed Black man was shocking, horrifying, and infuriatingly familiar.  George Floyd and his family have now joined a grievously long list of Black and Brown Americans who have had their lives and their liberties taken away by individuals and systems that perpetuate injustice and inequality.  Eric Garner.  Sandra Bland.  Philando Castile.  Freddie Gray.  Terence Crutcher.  Alton Sterling.  Walter Scott.  Tamir Rice.  Michael Brown.  Ahmaud Arbery.  Breonna Taylor.  The list of names seems endless and the pain behind each one is overwhelming.

So many in our community are hurting.  We’ve witnessed a modern-day lynching and it has brought fresh trauma to those who have suffered personal and generational wounds of injustice, racism, and oppression.  These are not isolated incidents but part of a larger culture which privileges some and oppresses others in ways that manifest in everything from the disproportional rates of COVID-19 deaths in Black and Brown communities to the flagrant abuse of privilege by a white dog walker calling the police and falsely claiming that her life was threatened by a Black birdwatcher who had simply asked her to follow the posted leash laws.

Our college is committed to the preparation of transformative educators, counselors, therapists, school and community leaders.  In the face of such glaring and graphic evidence of the deep roots of racism and the brokenness of our society, this work has taken on even greater importance and added urgency.

Our society needs transformative leaders in education-related fields now more than ever.  We need teachers who recognize the racist and hegemonic roots of our society and seek to understand how that reality impacts the lived experiences of our students.  We need counselors and therapists who believe that an integral part of being an advocate for the children and clients in our care is the willingness to call out discriminatory structures and systems that continue to breed inequity.  We educators who are willing to interrogate our own assumptions and engage in hard conversations about privilege, marginalization, bias, and inequity.  We need leaders who consistently and repeatedly stand with marginalized communities and vulnerable individuals and take bold action to make transformative change happen.

In the midst of heartache and outrage, I take solace in the knowledge that Lurie College is a community that is deeply committed to equity, inclusion, and racial and social justice.  I see strength in the dedication of our faculty, staff, and community partners.  I see hope in the passion and tenacity of our students and alumni.  Together, we will continue to work toward the promise of transformative change and the realization of a more just and equitable society.

Watch our Teacher Residency Program Info Session

The Teacher Residency Program at the Connie L. Lurie College of Education creates opportunities for teacher candidates to gain valuable professional experience, ongoing professional development, and significant financial support over the course of an academic year, all while decreasing the amount of time needed to complete a credential program. Through effective partnerships with school districts in the region, candidates are paired with mentor teachers and learn how to meet the needs of the students in those districts. Watch this recording from a recent online information session and visit to learn more.

Educators of Impact | Justine Huynh Vuong

With the COVID-19 crisis making it abundantly clear the critical role that educators play in our society, Lurie College is recognizing SJSU Educators of Impact who have made a transformative difference in the lives of children, families, and communities.  Learn more about SJSU Alumni and current Lurie College student Justine Huynh Vuong below.  To nominate an SJSU graduate who is an Educator of Impact, please complete this brief Google form.

SJSU Lurie College of Education Teacher Eduation Department student Justine Vuong

“With such a rapid shift to distance learning comes equity issues regarding access to online education. Justine has gone above and beyond to ensure that each and every student in her classroom has been provided with the accessibility needed to fully engage in the learning. As a result, 100% of her students have been able to connect in the new online environment.”

Student Spotlight | Ander Lucia

Learn about Ander Lucia, a Single Subject Credential student in the Teacher Education Department at the SJSU Lurie College of Education. Ander is also the recipient of Lurie College of Education General Scholarship for the 2019-2020 academic year!

Connect with Lurie College at to receive more news about academic and student life! Video and audio recorded by Brian Cheung Dooley and edited by Sydney Ahmadian. Music by Geographer.

Watch the Lurie College Spring 2020 Graduation Celebration

Spring 2020 Graduation Celebration

The Spring 2020 SJSU Lurie College of Education Graduation Celebration took place on Friday, May 22, at 4pm!  The full recording is available above and at  You can also skip to a section of the recording below.

Order of Events

  • 9:56 – Video acknowledgment of Spring 2020 Lurie College graduates (alphabetized by last name) and remarks from Dean Heather Lattimer
  • 13: 29 – Remarks from Associate Dean Marcos Pizarro
  • 18:14 – Remarks from Lurie College Commencement Speaker, Giselle Arellano (undergraduate, child development)
  • 33:17 – Slideshow of collages submitted by graduates (alphabetized by last name)

If you have any questions about the Lurie College Graduation Celebration, please contact

SJSU Spring 2020 Graduate Recognition Websites

SJSU has also created a website to recognize all of the Spring 2020 graduates for the entire university.  Visit the recognition webpage for Lurie College of Education Spring 2020 graduates.

Congratulations, New Lurie College Alumni

SJSU Lurie College of Education Commencement Graduation Counselor Education Department New Alumni

Congratulations to our new SJSU Lurie College of Education alumni.  We have no doubt that you are prepared to be transformative educators, counselors, therapists, school and community leaders!

We would love for you to stay connected with us as you transition into your next chapters.  Visit our Alumni webpage to take advantage of the many opportunities to connect with one another, stay connected with the college, and actively participate in the continued growth of the college.

If you plan to enroll in a graduate program, credential program, or doctoral program in the future, we have numerous opportunities available and our Student Success Center Advisors are happy to assist you with your application process.