Dr. Valenzuela inherited the ten-year investment in this effort (1999-2009) from NLERAPP founders Professor Pedro Pedraza and Dr. Melissa Rivera, now retired from Hunter College, City University of New York.  With support from a $300,000.00 grant from the Ford Foundation in November 2009, Dr. Valenzuela is spearheading the planning phase of these institutes and developing a research agenda that will have local-, state-, and national-level policy implications for addressing the vexed Latino education student and teacher pipeline with a focus on the kinds of programmatic elements, including curriculum development, that needs to be in place for the effective preparation of teachers.