The PUERTA Project



The PUERTA (Preparing Underrepresented Educators to Realize their Teaching Ambitions) Project seeks to increase the number of Latinx teachers serving in K-12 public schools. Funded by the U.S. Department of Education, PUERTA seeks to improve the practices and remove the barriers that prevent undergraduate Latinx students from earning a teaching credential at our institution. PUERTA has three primary goals: 1) to increase Hispanic and Latina/o student persistence and graduation rates, 2) to increase the number of Hispanic and Latino students who earn a teaching credential and 3) to increase the number of students who transfer to SSU from a two-year HSI. The activities PUERTA is implementing as the means for achieving the project goals are as follows:

1. Provide a continuum of student services to support student success among underrepresented, first-generation, and socioeconomically disadvantaged students.

2. Provide evidence-based, high-impact programming to support academic success. 

3. Provide outreach and career development support to encourage students to enter the teaching profession.

4. Work with campus-wide faculty and administrators to improve practices and obtain resources to remove barriers that prevent students from obtaining a teaching credential.

5. Provide a dedicated space where prospective teacher education students can go to receive supportive services and network with other students and experienced teaching professionals. 

Focus on research-based, high impact practices designed to support undergraduate Latinx students

• Supportive academic and student support advising via the Center for Academic Access and Student Enrichment (CAASE); 

• Engagement in high-impact programs designed to support student retention, including Summer Bridge, Freshman Year Experience, and Freshman Learning Communities;

• Supplemental Instruction (SI) in major courses that typically experience high levels of D, F and W grades;

• University-wide programming throughout the academic year that supports Latinx students aspiring to be teachers; and

• Teaching career readiness opportunities within the university and in local K-12 public school settings.

Contact Us 

If you are a student who would like more information about the PUERTA Program, please contact the PUERTA office at: 707-664-3567 or email PUERTA at

For information about the PUERTA Project, please contact the PUERTA Lead Team

Dr. Kelly Estrada, Co-PI/Co-Director
Telephone: 707-664-3176

Dr. Rhianna Casesa, Co-PI/Co-Director
Telephone: 707-664-2431


PUERTA Program Office

Center for Academic Access and Student Enrichment (CAASE)
Schulz Library, First Floor, Room 1119
Sonoma State University
1801 East Cotati Avenue
Rohnert Park, CA 94928
Phone: 707-664-3567