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The socio-cultural and leadership experiences of Latina four-year college and university presidents: a través de sus voces (through their voices)




Maes, Johanna B., author
Gray-Davies, Timothy, advisor
Johnson, Christine, committee member
Vigil, Patricia, committee member
Banning, James, committee member

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The Latina population in the United States is one of the largest of all racial and ethnic groups, and it is expected to grow exponentially within the next forty years. Despite these large numbers of Latinas in the U.S., there is a disparity with this population who are leading our nation's four-year colleges and universities. A reason for this may be what some education researchers call a "broken pipeline," where many Latinas reside in poorly-funded k-12 schools and are inappropriately tracked out of college preparatory classes and programs. Many Latinas are also tracked into trade or two-year community colleges where their opportunities for advanced degrees are delayed if not limited. However, those Latinas who successfully transfer from community colleges to four-year colleges and universities, as well as those who begin their baccalaureate programs in a four-year institution, are sometimes met with cultural, racial, and gender bias which can discourage their future professional leadership aspirations. This study, "The Socio-cultural and Leadership Experiences of Latina Four-year College and University Presidents: A Traves de sus Voces (Through their Voices)" considers the framework of intersectionality, where race, ethnicity, gender and socio-economic issues may contribute to the overall recruitment and retention of Latinas into presidential positions of four-year colleges and universities. Additionally, this study explores the notion of leadership from a Latina perspective, which often emphasizes themes such as character, competence, compassion, community servant hood and role modeling received by elder Latinas. It is my hope that this study will highlight the stories from this marginal population and also provide much-needed credible narratives to academic research.


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