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National Institute for the Advancement of Education

The National Institute for the Advancement of Education is built on a foundation of innovation and research intended to identify and disseminate next-generation practices in urban education and educator preparation across PK-20 contexts.


The National Institute for the Advancement of Education (NIAE) is an autonomous unit that:

  • Prepares educators and other education professionals for reinventing education and wrap-around services in PK-20 and other relevant community contexts
  • Emphasizes culturally responsive learning among practitioners, students, policymakers, and those they serve
  • Supports community-school initiatives and wrap-around services for youth and their families

We contribute to the advancement of education by:

  • Identifying, developing, and evaluating educator preparation practices in response to changing societal contexts
  • Producing next-generation practices that yield significant educational, social, and other community-oriented outcomes
  • Developing scholarship and products designed to engage intersectional diverse populations

We continuously improve activities and scale our expert staff by systematically studying and revising approaches to educator preparation in partnership with:

  • Schools, districts, and educational advocacy groups
  • Industry and technology leaders
  • College and university colleagues



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Institute Initiatives

The following founding initiatives are supported through the Institute.

ALL-IN Urban Residency Program

The Academy for Leadership and Licensure Innovations for Nevada (ALL-IN) Urban Residency Program is a year-long experience in which select Alternate Route to Licensure (ARL) candidates are immersed in interdisciplinary and site-specific adaptive learnings.

Programs are situated in economically distressed communities and prepare and support:

  • ARL teacher candidates in early childhood, elementary, secondary, and special education to work in public schools in southern Nevada
  • Currently-licensed early childhood, elementary, secondary, and special education teachers to develop their leadership skills through an advanced credential in teacher leadership

Program activities also include:

  • Customized professional development and support based on teacher progress
  • Family engagement opportunities
  • A summer learning academy for K-12 students
  • Community and academic products (e.g., media releases, articles, presentations, policy papers) to inform practice and policy

The program is designed to

  • Prepare and retain highly effective diverse teachers
  • Close the opportunity gap for culturally, linguistically, and racially diverse student populations
  • Improve high school graduation rates
  • Continuously and intentionally engage teachers, community members, parents, and families

Applications are closed until late spring 2022.

Paraprofessional Pathways Project

The Paraprofessional Pathways Project (PPP), is a fast-track grow-your-own educator pipeline program that cultivates Nevada public school support staff (e.g., paraprofessionals, classroom aides) with associate’s degrees (or equivalent coursework) to pursue teaching licenses in Nevada.

PPP courses required for intended licensure are offered outside educators’ contracted work schedules, in some cases using 4-, 8-, and 16-week courses. Class types (e.g., live in-person, live online, hybrid, all online) also vary.

Students who have met the general university core requirements and prerequisites may complete their program in as little as four semesters.

Candidates are enrolled using a cohort model in a post-associate's track and can earn bachelor’s degrees in:

  • Early childhood education
  • Elementary education
  • Special education

Applications are closed until late spring 2022.

Las Vegas Community Schools Academy

The Reinvent Schools Las Vegas program is a partnership between the City of Las Vegas, the Clark County School District, and UNLV’s College of Education created to support high-needs schools by transforming them into full-service community schools. The program currently provides after-school programming, integrated student support, parent advocacy and training, and community engagement to 14 public elementary schools.

The program is taking on a new initiative, which will: 

  • Develop the Las Vegas Community Schools Academy within Ward 1, focused on elementary-level bilingualism, STEAM fields (including health sciences), and social/emotional development
  • Provide integrated health services to Ward 1 students, families, and other community members using a wellness framework

This initiative is supported by UNLV faculty, students, and staff across colleges that include the College of Education, School of Medicine, School of Dental Medicine, and School of Nursing as well as community partners within the City of Las Vegas and participating elementary schools in the Clark County School District.

The academy initiative’s success will be measured by:

  • Increased academic achievement across content areas
  • Expanded and extended learning opportunities for educator candidates related to STEAM education, ELL, and general field placement
  • Greater integration of student supports for elementary students
  • Elevated levels of family and community engagement

Nevada Institute on Teaching and Educator Preparation (NITEP) Fellowship Program

The Nevada Institute on Teaching and Educator Preparation Fellowship Program recruits highly promising future educators and promotes their sustained engagement in education via culturally responsive practices. The three principal goals of NITEP Fellowship Program are to:

  • Support pre-service teachers to be reflective of and responsive to a Nevada specific landscape
  • Cultivate community-based connections locally, nationally, and internationally
  • Support the larger field of education via scholarship on educational practices

The program’s components include:

  • Educational Engagement Pathways
    • Fellows participate in one of four specially tailored opportunities, including a mentorship with a NITEP team leader. 
  • Community Engagement Pathways
    • Fellows participate in one of three community embedded service-learning opportunities designed to provide wrap around support. 
  • Professional Development 
    • Fellows participate in four community opportunities, aimed at supporting pre-service teacher development. Fellows expand educational knowledge and understanding by providing examples of evidence-based practices within the community they can deploy in their teaching careers. 
  • Micro-Credentialing
    • Fellows can obtain a micro-credential by completing a variety of content units focused on authentic, meaningful, and relevant professional development in Title I settings, positioning them as community leaders upon completion of their program.
  • Innovative Research Projects
    • Fellows can participate in grant funded research team projects developed to specifically include them and develop their capacity as teacher researchers.

Contact Information

Please contact us for more information about our programs and research.

National Institute for the Advancement of Education
Office: CEB 301
Phone: 702-895-3375

Maria Marinch, DPP
Executive Director
Office: CEB 319
Phone: 702-895-3016