early childhood institute (eci)

ECI Children with Block

eci logoRecognizing 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 by collaborating with campus and community partners to advance applied research; building the capacity of early childhood professionals through training opportunities; and advocacy on behalf of early childhood professionals, young children, and families.

We invite you to connect with us and support these efforts.

ECI TrainingECI ResearchECI Policy


Articles of Interest

  • 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) 


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 tailored 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 with current students who share in the mission to promote high-quality learning experiences for children?



Maria Fusaro, Co-Founder and Director

Dr. Maria Fusaro’s (EdD) 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, Co-Founder and Associate Director

Dr. Andrea Golloher (PhD, BCBA) 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, Co-Founder and Head of Outreach

Dr. Emily Slusser (PhD) 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. 


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: