CWLP Fellows

The California world language project (CWLP) is a collaborative, statewide network that sponsors year-round professional development programs for world languages educators intended to strengthen the teaching of languages and cultures in California. The project aims to involve every language teacher in supportive professional learning communities that foster excellence in language teaching, deepen content knowledge and pedagogical skills, and provide leadership development opportunities. CWLP continuously advocates for the retention, expansion and articulation of world language programs across all language levels, especially in the critical languages and cultures deemed to be essential for California students to contribute to and successfully interact in our linguistically and culturally diverse society.

The SAILN project offers year around Standard-based professional development (Strands A – D, Foundational to Leadership Workshops) opportunities for all language teachers including k- 16 public school teachers, heritage/community school teachers, after school program teachers, etc. to further develop their instructional teaching competencies. Furthermore, these professional development programs enable teachers to take on leadership roles in the classroom as well as at their school and at the district level. Upon completion of 120 hours of professional development in the SAILN Project Strands, teachers become CWLP Fellows, which empowers them to become SAILN Project interns, trainers, and future state level advocates.

Current Fellows

Click on a name to view more.

Alaa Arabic FellowDr. Alaa Gado Kana has been working with San Diego State University Research Foundation - LARC teaching Arabic MSA and Iraqi dialect since 2009. He participated in STARTALK summer teacher training program for years 2017 and 2018. Dr. Kana attended all the professional development workshops of SAILN (Southern Area International Language Network). In addition, Dr. Kana is an Arabic Professor at Grossmont-Cuyamaca College in world language department. He is also a certified ACTFL OPI tester and ACTFL WPT rater of Arabic from the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. Throughout his career, he taught at several universities in Iraq, Jordan, and the United States. Dr. Kana is also the author of five books and he published many research articles. For more information please view his website:
Cristal PictureCristal Herrera has been a K-8 teacher since 2001. In 2000, she graduated from U.C. Davis with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology with a minor in Sociology. She taught at San Diego Unified from 2001-2010 in the Logan Heights neighborhood focusing on providing English language development support to her students. In 2010, Cristal was hired as a Spanish Immersion teacher at Riverview Elementary in Lakeside. During this time she pursued her Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership with an Emphasis in Technology, along with a Preliminary Administrative Services Credential, through San Diego State University. Cristal is now a Spanish Immersion and ELD teacher at Tierra del Sol Middle School. Cristal became a CWLP fellow in the Spring of 2020.
mariana imageMariana Apalategui 20+ years teaching experience in Spanish and English as a Second Language. Mariana holds a Bachelor’s degree in Spanish from San Diego State University and a Master’s of Art in Spanish Linguistics from the San Diego State University. During her graduate course work, she traveled to Spain, where she taught ESL and took graduate courses in Teaching Spanish as a Second Language at the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares. She currently teaches Spanish at Point Loma Nazarene University in Point Loma, CA.
Robin Newsom-WuertzFounder of Creative ASL Teaching blog and an #aslteacherchat moderator has 20+ years teaching experience in ASL. Robin holds a Bachelor’s degree in Deaf Studies from California State University Northridge and a Master’s of Science in School Counseling from the University of LaVerne. She teaches ASL and Physical Education at Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA. Robin is a workshop presenter in ASL curriculum, standards, and second language acquisition. Robin also works as a consultant to help other schools in her area establish and maintain thriving ASL programs. She is a new teacher mentor, a Fellow in the California World Language Project, and the world language department chair at her school site. Her passion is to support ASL teachers in their journey to become creative innovators and leaders in the field of World Language instruction.

Phone: 619-594-5810
Fax: 619-594-0511