Maria was born and raised in Yonkers, New York. Her father is Cuban and her mother is from El Salvador. She attended a Bilingual elementary school PS #19 where she learned English and learned to love education. Maria's influences are her elementary school Bilingual Teachers and her parents. She majored in Latin American Studies at SUNY Oneonta, New York and has a Masters of Arts Language, Literacy & Sociocultural Studies with an emphasis on Teaching English as a Second Language from the University of New Mexico. Maria's goals are to focus on data and resources for secondary education and to promote bilingual education as not only in Spanish but in all the languages spoken in New Mexico.