Early Childhood Institute

Early Childhood Institute

Equity. Quality. Inclusion.

Recognizing the potential each and every child brings into the world, the early childhood institute (eci) at sjsu promotes equitable, high-quality, inclusive early learning experiences through: expanding and enhancing the training of early childhood professionals; collaborating with campus and community partners to advance applied research; and engaging in advocacy efforts that benefit educators, young children, and families.

We invite you to connect with us:

ECI TrainingECI ResearchECI Policy


ECI is a community-focused institute, designed to generate opportunities for interaction among current and past students, SJSU faculty, local early childhood leaders, and practitioners. Our work is informed by, and directed toward, the needs and interests of diverse populations and stakeholders within the community.

Are you an SJSU alumni whose career involves working with young children and their families? Are you interested in connecting with other alumni and current students who share the goal of promoting high-quality early care and learning experiences for children?

Connect with us as we build a student-alumni network


Meet the Team

Maria Fusaro

Maria Fusaro, EdD, Co-Founder and Director
Dr. Fusaro’s research centers on how young children, under age 5, learn from and with other people, through verbal and gesture-based communication and through question-answer exchanges. Bridging her teaching and research, she also studies the preparation of undergraduate students for careers in infant/toddler care and education, and for providing high quality, supportive learning experiences for young children.

Andrea Golloher

Andrea Golloher, PhD, Co-Founder and Associate Director
Dr. Golloher has been passionate about the field of early childhood special education and the power of research to improve practice since she entered the field as an in-home therapist for children with autism. Her current work focuses on developing support systems to increase capacity for inclusive practices to benefit each and every child, from the start.

Emily Slusser

Emily Slusser, PhD, Co-Founder and Head of Outreach
Dr. Slusser began her career in child development as the program coordinator for a community based organization where she developed language and literacy curriculum for preschool children. Her current research explores how cognitive resources drive language learning and how language, in turn, supports further conceptual development.

 In the News

  • ECI Response to Governor Newsom’s Budget Proposal (submitted to CA Representatives, Jan. 2020)
  • ECI Position Statement on the CTC’s Proposed Early Childhood Education Performance Expectations and Program Guidelines (submitted to CTC, July 2018)


Join us at an upcoming ECI event, bringing together faculty, students, and community partners engaged in early childhood research, practice, and advocacy.


If you are looking for early education and care for your child, please contact our partners: