ERIC Number: EJ844979
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 17
Support Systems and Women of the Diaspora
Ojo, Elizabeth D.
New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, n122 p73-82 Sum 2009
Humans are social beings endowed with intrinsic and extrinsic capabilities and a desire to seek and receive social support from one another. The extent to which this action takes place varies as people move farther away from their familiar environment to new locations. Many immigrant women have traveled far and wide in search of "better opportunities that were not readily available in the home country." Women migrants have a desire to improve their self-worth, gain economic freedom, and make contributions to society. As immigrant women work to achieve these goals, higher education becomes an important factor in that it is often viewed as their gateway to a better life in the new country. It is therefore imperative to understand the various elements built into the education system and in the wider society that either support or hinder acculturation and success among women of the Diaspora. This chapter articulates how African Diasporan women negotiate, claim social space, and acquire support systems in and out of the learning organization. Drawing from the literature and the personal experiences of the author, this chapter highlights the insider and outsider status of the immigrant adult learner and the challenges associated with forming relationships and networks with members of the various cultures. The author also explores how immigrant women have used networking to navigate their diverse educational paths, and offers recommendations for creating and enhancing support systems for immigrant women in higher education.
Descriptors: Higher Education, Females, Immigrants, Adult Learning, Womens Education, Social Capital, Adult Education, Adult Students, Social Networks
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A