Fall 2023 Newsletter

As we embark on our second year, I am excited to present you with the second edition of the EDvance College newsletter! In this edition, I am pleased to share with you the hard work of our EDvance College team to grow our institution over the summer and prepare for the fall. Thank you for continuing to be a part of the EDvance College community and for your dedication and commitment to providing the best education for our youngest learners.


Dr. Lygia Stebbing

Navigating a Bright Future Together: Fall 2023 Updates

Dear EDvance College Community,

As we step into our second year, I am excited to reconnect and share the incredible strides we've made over the summer. The dedicated EDvance College team has been working tirelessly, focusing on key areas to enhance our institution.

We've expanded our team by welcoming new staff and faculty, implementing a comprehensive onboarding process to ensure their full embrace of our innovative model and EDvance Culture. This fall, we also welcomed two new upper division cohorts and extended our programming into the East Bay, forging a strong partnership with the East Bay YMCA's apprenticeship program. Furthermore, we are actively establishing new partnerships to extend our programming into the South Bay, serving San Mateo and Santa Clara counties in the 24-25 Academic Year.

In August, we held our second annual board retreat, an event that highlighted the transformative impact of our work. At the core of all our programs is the empowerment of student voices. This year, we were privileged to welcome two distinguished guests: current student Tran Truong and alumna Gigi Munoz. Ms. Truong eloquently conveyed the profound influence of EDvance on her personal journey, emphasizing the sense of community and support our college provides to English language learners. Ms. Munoz, a current doctoral student and ECE Workforce Development and Success Director, enriched our discussions with her extensive expertise in developing educator pathways in San Francisco. She also inspired us with her journey to her doctoral program and research focused on creating pathways for Latinx early childhood providers. The lived experiences and insights of individuals like Gigi and Tran continue to guide our ongoing efforts to prepare our students for successful careers in early childhood education.

In late spring, EDvance College was awarded an Integrated Undergraduate Teacher Preparation Grant by the California Teacher Credentialing (CTC). This grant will enable us to create a groundbreaking blended PK-3 Credential and ECS BA degree program, further enhancing our dedication to preparing educators for success. We extend our deepest gratitude for the generous support we've received from various foundations and organizations this summer. Securing new grants from the Stranahan Foundation and the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, along with renewals from the Mimi and Peter Haas Fund and the Heising Simons Foundation, fuels our renewed energy and innovation as we pursue our mission.

As we embark on this new academic journey, I am filled with pride and optimism for the path ahead. Together, as a united EDvance College community, we will continue to provide outstanding education, cultivate a profound sense of belonging, and empower our students to achieve unprecedented heights. I invite each of you to stay engaged, actively participate, and become part of the remarkable narrative that defines EDvance College. Your unwavering support and dedication are the cornerstones of our shared success.

Sincerely, Dr. Lygia Stebbing

President, EDvance College

Empowering Voices: Advocating for Baby Prop C

In June, our EDvance College students and alumni came together at City Hall, united by a common cause – to lend their voices in support of Baby Prop C. At the heart of our mission lies the commitment to ensure that our graduates not only excel in their careers but also understand the pivotal role of policy, advocacy, and organizing in early childhood education. Baby Prop C marked a significant milestone in the journey towards strengthening early childhood education. It supported an increase in early childhood wages, recognizing the vital role educators play in shaping the future. 

In preparation for this advocacy efforts like this, our EDvance students practice giving public testimonies in their coursework, honing their skills in articulating the importance of early childhood education. Their focus on advocacy paid off, as they eloquently represented the needs of our youngest learners and their dedicated educators.

One shining example of EDvance's commitment to advocacy is EDvance Alumnus Jacqueline Slayton, whose powerful testimony captured the essence of our collective dedication to early childhood education. Her words resonated with decision-makers and stakeholders alike, leaving a lasting impression of the importance of supporting our early childhood workforce.

We invite you to take a moment to watch Jacqueline's testimony and witness the impactful contributions of our EDvance community in advocating for positive change. Together, we continue to champion the well-being and education of the youngest members of our society.

EDvance students and alumni with their family members in support of Baby Prop C.

Student Spotlight

Cultivating Diversity and Excellence: Our Fall 2023 Cohort

On Saturday, August 12th, EDvance College brought together students, community partners, staff and faculty for a day of impactful new student orientations. Hosted at the East Bay YMCA and Children’s Council of San Francisco, these events played a crucial role in preparing our incoming upper division cohorts for the upcoming fall semester.  Our Fall 2023 upper division cohorts, comprising 44 early childhood educators, beautifully reflect the rich cultural, ethnic, and linguistic diversity within the early childhood workforce.

Many of our students, due to their demanding work and family schedules, never imagined college as a possibility. However, EDvance College's unique approach, offering classes that can be completed from the comfort of one's home, opened doors for them. One of our new students, Perla Madrigal, expressed her enthusiasm, stating, "I have decided to prioritize my education and I am glad to have found EDvance College to help me achieve this goal. Their classes can be completed from the comfort of my own home, which is a unique opportunity that I appreciate. I am excited to be a part of this journey." 

To set our new students up for success, we organize annual in-person gatherings where they acquire hands-on experience with crucial tools that form the foundation of their classroom skills. These orientations involve engaging activities like the brain architecture game, which not only assesses teamwork abilities but also imparts valuable knowledge about brain development and protective factors. Our orientations have proven to be instrumental in fostering a supportive and inclusive learning environment that empowers our students to reach their educational objectives.

We extend our sincere appreciation to our community partners, the East Bay YMCA and Children’s Council of San Francisco, for graciously hosting our orientations. Additionally, a special thank you to Cross Cultural for sponsoring lunch at the San Francisco orientation. Their unwavering support is instrumental in our students' success, and we are truly thankful for their partnership.

Top: San Francisco Upper Division Cohort, Class of 2025; Bottom: East Bay Upper Division Cohort, Class of 2025

Celebrating the Return of Our Inaugural Cohort

We are delighted to announce that all 22 students from our inaugural cohort are returning for their senior year, achieving an impressive 100% retention rate. These dedicated students bring a wealth of experience and enthusiasm as they continue their journey towards becoming exceptional early childhood educators.

This semester, our returning students will dive into the world of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) concepts in Early Childhood Education. They will apply both traditional and innovative teaching strategies to develop engaging curriculum. In their Pedagogical Approaches in STEAM CORP class, they will deepen their understanding of implementing mathematical and scientific concepts in a classroom setting while collaborating with their peers. Furthermore, our students will explore how to nurture children's creativity through curriculum development and critically examine historical and current policies affecting early childhood education and child development, all through the lens of equity and social justice. This exploration will help them understand the vital role of advocacy and organizing in the policy-making process.

As one returning student aptly put it, "EDvance continues to build on our profession and knowledge, granting us access to courses that we may not have considered part of our profession, like policy and advocacy." We are excited to see our students continue to build upon the skills and knowledge they cultivated last year, fostering an environment of continuous learning and growth.

Another student from our inaugural cohort expressed their appreciation for EDvance's commitment to improvement, saying, "It makes me happy to know that feedback is acknowledged, and I hope that they continue this model of listening to us. It validates our experiences as students that are part of this institution."

As we embark on this new academic year, we are immensely proud of the progress our returning students have made and the impact they will continue to have on the field of early childhood education. Their dedication and passion are truly inspiring, and we look forward to watching them walk the stage at their graduation in May 2024.

Class of 2024 in ECS 451: Pedagogical Approaches In STEAM CORP with Anna Arambula-Gonzalez

Alumni Spotlight: Championing Equity and Advocacy - Jessica Campos

Meet Jessica Campos, an EDvance College alumna making waves in the field of early childhood education and advocacy. Currently serving as the Community Engagement and Outreach Director for the San Francisco Office of Racial Equity (SF ORE), Jessica's journey is a testament to the transformative power of education and dedication.

With 16 years of experience in Early Care and Education, Jessica transitioned to work with the SF ORE, driven by a deep desire to understand the policymaking process and its impact on children, families, and communities. Jessica joined EDvance College in 2018, graduating in 2020, and she fondly recalls how the program provided her with the tools and a degree she needed to make a difference. Ms. Campos reflects  "As a first-generation Mexican-American college graduate in a leadership role, EDvance provided me with the tools and a degree I needed to open up multiple paths for myself to grow and anchor back to how our communities and children are being served with pathways for their success."

Jessica also serves as the Board Secretary on the EDvance College Board of Directors, where she brings her unique perspective and experiences as an educator to advocate for families and communities. She firmly believes that EDvance is more than traditional education—it's a model of self-reflection, inquiry, and intentional embedding. As Jessica reflected, "I have come full circle, and it was a privilege to have been in the program and now sit among the inaugural board members."

Jessica Campos is a shining example of the impact that EDvance College alumni can have on the world. Her commitment to equity and advocacy continues to inspire us all.

Alumni and Board Member Jessica Campos with her coworker at the SF Dream Keepers Initiative

EDvance College Updates

EDvance in the Spotlight

Over the summer, EDvance has gained recognition in two esteemed publications: the Chronicle of Philanthropy and Inside Philanthropy. These articles thoughtfully illuminate the evolution and mission of EDvance, and we urge you to take a moment to dive into the insightful pieces. Furthermore, we encourage you to share these articles within your networks, helping us to extend our reach and impact.

Read the full articles here:

Chronicle of Philanthropy: A Better Way to Educate the Educators

"While pursuing her doctorate degree in education, Lygia Stebbing looked at the growing number of state and federal mandates for early-childhood educators to have a bachelor’s degree and saw a problem. She worried that degree requirements would push women of color out of the field and focused her dissertation on that topic. Along the way, Stebbing came up with a solution that bypasses barriers that often prevent women of color from obtaining college degrees..."

Inside Philanthropy: Rockstar Successful, Why Early Ed Funders Are Backing this Unique Approach to Training Educators. 

"There isn’t an easy fix for the crisis in early childhood education, but removing the obstacles facing early educators would get us at least part of the way there. EDvance College was created to tear down some of those barriers by making it easier and more affordable for early educators to earn a bachelor’s degree while remaining in the workforce..."

Elevating Our Early Childhood Studies Faculty Team

At EDvance College, we take immense pride in the exceptional faculty and team members who continually champion the needs of our early childhood educators and multilingual learners. We are excited to share some recent achievements and contributions from these dedicated individuals:

Anna Arambula-Gonzalez,  Director of Regional Practice, has been chosen to participate in the prestigious 2024 EL (English Learner) Advocacy Institute. Anna will be joining a distinguished group of mid-career EL Advocates from across California, alongside seasoned experts in EL advocacy. The institute's agenda is brimming with enriching experiences, including historical reviews of prior campaigns to enhance EL education, interactions with top EL authorities and leaders in the field, up-to-date briefings on current EL policy in California, and practical skills to bolster her advocacy efforts within her own schools and districts.

Katie Mervin, Director of Regional Practice, has been selected to serve as a member of the Child Development Permit Workgroup at the Commission on Teacher Credentialing. This workgroup consists of a diverse cross-section of early childhood education experts chosen for their expertise and relevant experience. Their role is to advise and provide recommendations regarding the Child Development Permit structure. Katie has also earned a spot in the University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School Early Relational Health Fellowship, aimed at advancing the quality of mental health services for infants and young children within the context of their earliest relationships. The program seeks to enhance the knowledge base of clinicians supporting society's most vulnerable children and families.

Carola Oliva-Olson, Vice President of Early Childhood Studies, has recently showcased her expertise as a panelist at the Children’s Equity Project and The Century Foundation’s Dual Language Immersion Convening in the heart of Washington DC. Dr. Oliva-Olson took part in four pivotal panel discussions, touching upon critical topics such as workforce and professional development, programmatic structures, language allocation, and pedagogy. This month, Dr. Oliva-Olson, a dedicated member of the Governor's Early Childhood Policy Council (ECPC), is set to take the lead in a significant conversation. She will be shedding light on the utmost importance of providing unwavering support for young multilingual learners and their families within our educational landscape. Stay tuned for her insights and contributions to the field!

Introducing the Language Justice Institute (LJI) at EDvance College

We are excited to announce that the Language Justice Institute (LJI) is now part of EDvance College, marking a significant advancement in our commitment to providing fair and inclusive education for multilingual learners aged from birth to eight years old. This initiative is led by Dr. Carola Oliva-Olson, who serves as our Vice President of Early Childhood Studies, and Anna Arambula-Gonzalez, our Director of Regional Practice. Together, they bring a wealth of expertise in supporting Multilingual Learners to our institution.

Originally conceived by Dr. Carola Oliva-Olson, Dr. Rosemarie Allen, and Anna Arambula-Gonzalez at the Institute for Racial Equity & Excellence, the LJI has now found its new home within EDvance College. Its core mission is to advocate for language justice in early childhood education, embracing a diverse range of language practices, including dialects, code-switching, verbal and nonverbal communication, and native languages.

Currently, the LJI is actively involved in projects with various counties in California, collaborating with institutions such as the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools, Orange County Department of Education, and Fresno County Superintendent of Schools. The LJI will serve as a valuable resource hub, offering professional development opportunities and technical assistance for programs catering to multilingual learners.

Among the resources provided will be the Multilingual Learners Toolkit and video recordings featuring experts in the field discussing strategies to support various home languages in early learning settings, spanning from birth to age eight. The Language Justice Institute at EDvance College will operate as a distinct program separate from our existing BA program. While it won't offer academic credit units, it will serve as an invaluable support system for educators, leaders, and families looking to enhance multilingual education and provide optimal support for multilingual learners.

Quote on Equitable Education from Dr. Carola Oliva-Olson

Empowering Early Childhood Educators: EDvance College's Recruitment Initiatives

At EDvance, our commitment to shaping the future of early childhood education goes hand in hand with our dedication to working closely with our partners. We've been diligently assessing workforce needs and gaining a deeper understanding of coursework requirements for both incumbent and aspiring early childhood educators.

With this commitment in mind, we are actively recruiting for the upcoming year and are committed to supporting students who may require transferable general education courses, including contextualized GE offerings in the upcoming spring semester.

If you, or someone you know, is passionate about early childhood education and resides in San Francisco, Alameda, San Mateo, or Santa Clara Counties, we invite you to attend one of our upcoming information sessions. These sessions will provide invaluable insights into the opportunities and pathways available at EDvance College. For session dates and RSVP details, please visit our website, where you'll find all the information needed to take the next step on the journey toward a fulfilling career in early childhood education.

In addition to our scheduled information sessions, our Outreach Team offers the flexibility of hosting either in-person or virtual sessions tailored specifically for agencies. We are here to support your organization's workforce development needs and eagerly look forward to engaging in meaningful discussions about the future of early childhood education in our communities.

For more information or to schedule a specialized session for your agency, please do not hesitate to contact our Outreach Team at amy.c@edvance.edu or (310)-767-6106.

Job Postings

Whether you’re an ECE center looking to promote job openings or a student looking for career advancement opportunities, EDvance College’s ECE Job Board helps connect opportunities with qualified educators. Please be sure to send ECE job postings to info@edvance.edu.

Below are recent positions that are available: 

  • Infant & Toddler Teacher, Associate Infant & Toddler Teacher, Preschool Teacher, Associate Teacher, and Assistant Teacher at Peninsula Jewish Community Center (PJCC)
  • Long-term Substitute at Project Commotion/Las Luciérnagas (LL)
  • Preschool Teachers and Aides at Petite Explorer Preschool
  • Lead Teacher, Teacher, and Teacher’s Assistant Float at Felton Institute
  • Lead Teacher at Center for Early Intervention on Deafness


Support EDvance College

EDvance is actively seeking donations to bolster our institutional grants. These grants play a pivotal role in ensuring that all our students can graduate without the burden of debt. If you or someone you know would like to support our mission through individual donations, you can easily do so by clicking below.