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ERIC Number: ED550469
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 196
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: 978-1-2678-3697-7
Latinas in Higher Education: An Interpretive Study of Experiential Influences That Impact Their Life Choices
Torres-Capeles, Belkis
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Kent State University
This basic interpretive qualitative study used individual semi-structured interviews to explore and understand the experiences of seven self-identified Latina participants, who reside in Northeast Ohio and belong to a volunteer organization promoting professional Latinas. The study used Latina Critical Race theory and feminist perspectives to focus on various influences impacting the participants' experiences in higher education, career, and leadership roles, besides exploring the impact of gender, ethnicity, and culture on their experiences within dominant mainstream settings. The research also examines how the Latinas' perceptions of educators and administrators influenced their academic and professional choices. The results of this study suggest that perceived stereotypes and marginalization negatively influence "immigrant to 1.5G or second generation" Latinas' ability to experience higher education as an inclusive environment. Acculturative stress, ethnic identity, family values and English language proficiency also impact their pursuit of higher education, career, and leadership roles in different ways. The concept of enacting "brio," its associated traits and personal work ethic allow Latinas to resist influences that discourage their academic and professional goals. Additionally, the study found that Latinas act as change agents by using positive introspection and transformative resistance to continuously challenge the existing discriminatory status quo. Transformational leadership emerged as an overarching theme for all seven participants, who use this strategy to foster a sense of community and collaboration with peers. A major finding of this study, that requires further exploration, is the perceived negative relationship between Latinas and institution leaders, educators and administrators as they strive for success. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Ohio