Project ACCESS

Are you interested in a career working with children and helping to develop the minds of our future leaders?  Is English your second language and do you wish to improve your English reading, writing and speaking skills?  Then Project ACCESS may be just for you.

Project ACCESS: Advancing Child Care Education and Student Success

Project ACCESS is a collaborative project between Diablo Valley College, Catholic Charities of the East Bay and Mt. Diablo Adult Education. It provides training, career and other support services for non-native speakers of English who want to enter and advance in the early childhood education (ECE) field. The program is supported by the East Bay Career Advancement Academy which provides English instruction in specific career fields using material that will be used on the job.

Students take one English as a Second Language (ESL) class and one Early Childhood Education (ECE) class per term. The instructors work together to support student learning in a linked learning environment and the work in the ESL class is based on concepts learned in the ECE class.

The classes are taught in the evening to allow students to work and go to school. Our goal is to assist students in finding paid or unpaid work experience to supplement the concepts learned in class and to gain the experience to get a permanent job at the end of the training program.


Basic information:

  • Students earn associate teacher certificate and attend class part-time.
  • Upon completion students transition along early childhood education pathway.
  • This program is a collaboration with Catholic Charities of the East Bay and Mt. Diablo Adult Education.
  • A Bridge Program from Mt. Diablo Adult Education ESL Program to Diablo Valley College prepares students for college level ESL courses.
  • There is linked instruction with ECE and ESL.
  • Currently the program is tuition free for California residents and a book loan program is available.
  • Career support is offered.
  • Case management is provided.
  • Assistance is given with ECE Permit application.


Program goals and benefits:

  • allows ESL students to achieve their goals of certification in the early childhood education field
  • reduces training time through coordinated curriculum
  • encourages lifelong learning
  • increases students’ confidence


Requirements for Project ACCESS program:

  • high school diploma
  • eligible to work in the United States


Career support:

Our staff will work with you to define your career goals and look for a job. We will help you:

  • in resume preparation
  • in interview preparation
  • to find job openings
  • in application completion
  • to obtain an interview
  • with educational counseling
  • with permit applications


Next steps to enroll:

To learn how to enroll or for more information contact:

Cecilia Ornelas
Catholic Charities of the East Bay
Program Coordinator


Dona DeRusso
Diablo Valley College
Project Director
925-685-1230, ext. 2716


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