- Ph.D. — New Mexico State University, 2008
- M.Ed. — The University of Texas Permian Basin, 2000
- CDA — Central Arizona College, 1995
- B.S. — Arizona State University, 1990
- A.A. — Glendale Community College, 1987
- Appointed interim dean, 2018-2019
- Hispanic Heritage honoree representing educated women, 2019
- International presentation - University of Cambridge, 2018
- International presentation - University of Oxford, 2017
- Tenured promotion to associate professor, 2014
- Recipient: Circle of Friends Community Service Award, 2013
- Recipient: National Society Leadership and Success Award: Excellence in Teaching, 2013
In which online degree program do you teach?
Which classes do you teach online?
History and Politics in Bilingual Education; Teaching Science, Social Studies and Math in Spanish; Teaching Language Arts and Reading for Spanish Speakers; Methods of Teaching ESL; Issues and Advanced Problems in English as a Second Language; Practicum: Bilingual/ESL; Seminar in Bilingual/ESL Education
What do you want your students to learn in your classes?
One thing I like students to take from our courses is the history of bilingual/ESL and the impact it has on all our students. I hope they grasp the language learning process so they will have a good understanding of how to address the education of a student who has little to no English language background, and help them reach their full potential.
Why did you start teaching?
I started teaching to be a part of my own children's learning; I wanted to understand how they were applying knowledge to their own lives. I soon discovered that it is never-ending. Learning is a product of growth, and through teaching, these applications can be applied and practiced, thereby adding character and caliber to someone's life.
What's the best advice that you could give your students?
The best advice I can give students is to find their purpose, the relevance and the fit for what they are doing. When they can do this, the rest will be easy as this will lead them to choices. I hope they think about how these choices will apply to their careers, their future, etc. At the same time, they measure their own growth in this learning process along the way.
What qualities make someone particularly successful in education?
The first and foremost quality I believe is a "sense of purpose." Really understand why you want to do this. Without purpose, you run the risk of not finishing. The second quality is a combination of four qualities: self-discipline, commitment, motivation and organization. These all work together to achieve the behavior required to complete the project. Motivation and commitment will drive one's self-discipline while the organization will help in the focus of completing the final product.
The third quality needed is critical thinking. We must extend ourselves in conceptualizing, analyzing, synthesizing and/or evaluating information being presented; allowing for mistakes to be made and flexibility in modifying perspectives.
The last quality is a combination of perseverance and communication. Don't give up. Communication will be the key to staying focused and addressing any difficulties that may appear.
What do you think is the biggest challenge that educators face today?
The first challenge is time management. Most students attending higher education have full-time jobs and families to tend to, providing little time to engage in the voluminous academic text readings and assessments. The next challenge is the skill of writing. Writing is time-consuming as it requires thought processes and research to support well-documented submissions. The final challenge is procrastination, especially for online learning. The daily responsibilities of full-time employment and family needs can be overwhelming if the student does not have an organized support network.
What is the one book you think everyone should read?
Because every teacher WILL teach an ESL student during their time, I would suggest they read: "Learning and Not Learning English: Latino Students in American Schools" by Guadalupe Valdes (2001). It's an old book, but so relevant to today's classrooms.
Tell us something interesting about yourself that your students might not know about you.
I have a background in criminal law and sociology.