Improving Futures Fund

Investing in the futures of our graduates and those they will serve

The Improving Futures Fund (IFF), launched by Dean Johnson in Fall 2014, provides funding to support College of Education’s faculty and staff endeavors that improve the futures our graduates and of children, youth, and adults they will serve while aligning with SDSU’s strategic plan. IFF invests in projects that make critical differences by enabling access and preparing educators for tomorrow.

Giving to IFF

Giving to the College of Education’s Improving Futures Fund is an investment that will improve the futures of our graduates and the children, youth, and adults they will serve — thank you! All contributions are tax-deductible and greatly appreciated.

All gifts to San Diego State University are accepted and administered by The Campanile Foundation (TCF), an official 501 [c] [3] auxiliary organization of San Diego State University. The Tax I.D. number is 33-0868418.

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In the NewsMore IFF News

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Past Award Recipients

Goal: To award scholarships to students who demonstrate promising potential as Reading and Literacy Leadership Specialists.

Outcome: Applications were accepted and scholarships up to $500 each were awarded in Spring 2017 to students who are currently enrolled RLLA students who plan to continue on for the RLLSC and/or MA. Awardee must work in a San Diego County TK-12 public school setting that serves socioeconomically disadvantaged or otherwise underserved (ethnically or linguistically diverse) student populations.

Goal: To recognize, award and retain excellent guide teachers while increasing collaboration between guide teachers and SDSU, and improving the experiences for our student teachers.

Outcome: Seven guide teachers were awarded for AY15-16 due to their excellence is supervising and preparing SDSU student teachers. Two of the awardees returned as guide teachers for AY16-17. The five that did not return were due to retirement, school location (did not have a student teacher for that area) or the school was not accepting student teachers. Overall, it was a successful round of awarding guide teachers.


Goal: To test an App that will increase self-regulation and determination to persist by training students daily in attention regulation (AR), emotion regulation (ER), and cognitive regulation (CR).

Outcome: Project suspended temporarily to redesign the product in a way that is more sensitive to diverse student populations.

Project SPOKES—Sustaining evidence-based Practices of preK-22 Education Specialists—is working to identify the needs of special education teachers. The focus is on investigating the needs of beginning special educators in San Diego and then providing training to their support providers so that they can be the most effective mentors and coaches possible. Three Department of Special Education faculty members—Drs. Yasemin Turan Qian, Regina Brandon, and Nicole Pyle—are in charge of the implementation and evaluation of this project.

Read more about Project SPOKES.

Photo: 3 founders of Project Spokes, Drs. Yasemin Turan Qian, Regina Brandon, and Nicole Pyle, pose on stairwell

Proposed by Dr. Luke Duesbery, School of Teacher Education This project will engage middle school students in Southeast San Diego in hands-on math and science instruction in a four-acre outdoor classroom outside of Millennial Tech Middle School. Dr. Duesbery will work in collaboration with a local non-profit agency, College of Education teacher candidates, and local teachers in ways that will teach students challenging academic concepts through exciting, hands-on approaches.

Proposed by Dr. Marva Cappello, School of Teacher Education.  As we strive to teach all children more complex academic skills, we should ensure that teachers become expert at using visual resources to help convey meaning. This new endeavor will engage College of Education students and faculty in research, teaching, and service activities that help educators learn how to make expert use of visual representations as they teach complex concepts to diverse groups of students. Learn more about the Center for Visual Literacies.

Proposed by Jeana Preston, Center for Family, School, and Community Engagement Selected as the Mission Federal Credit Union award winner, this project builds upon an existing effort to engage families in their children’s literacy development in 2 local schools. The expanded effort will engage College of Education students in ways that give them valuable opportunities to build relationships with diverse families in ways that support children’s academic development.

Watch the proposal video.

Contact Us

To learn more about IFF and how you can make a difference, please contact:

Megan Beardsley

Megan Beardsley

Director of Development

College of Education and Division of Academic Engagement & Student Achievement