This volume is designed to illuminate the educational experiences of Black women, from the time they earn their high school diplomas through graduate study, with a particular focus on their doctoral studies, by exploring the commonalities and the uniqueness of their individual paths and challenges. The chapters of this volume newly identify key factors and experiences that shape Black women’s engagement or disengagement with higher education.The original research presented here – using an array of theoretical lenses, as well as qualitative and quantitative methods – not only deepens our understanding of the experiences of African American women in the academy, but also seeks to strengthen the academic pipeline, not only for the benefit of those who may have felt disenfranchised in the past, but for all students.The contributors eschew the deficit-focused approach – that implies a lack of social and cultural capital based on prior educational experiences – adopted by many studies of non-dominant groups in education, and instead focus on the strengths and experiences of their subjects. Among their findings is the identification of the social capital that Black women are given and actively acquire in their pre-collegiate years that enable them to gain greater returns on their educational investments than their male peers. The book further describes the assistance and the interference African American women receive from their peers during their transition to college, and how peer interactions shape their early college experiences, and influence subsequent persistence decisions.Whether studying how Black women in the social and natural sciences navigate through this often rocky terrain, or uncovering the extent to which African American women doctoral students access postsecondary education through community colleges, and their special needs for more mentoring and advising support, this book provides researchers and graduate students with rich information on how to successfully engage and succeed in the doctoral process.It also demonstrates to women faculty and administrators how they can become better navigators, guides, and advocates for the African American women who come after them.
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About the Author
V. Barbara Bush is an assistant professor of higher education at the University of North Texas. She holds a Ph.D. in Higher Education from Claremont Graduate University and served as a senior student affairs officer and practitioner in California, Illinois and Wisconsin.
Crystal Renee Chambers is an assistant professor at East Carolina University College of Education in the Department of Educational Leadership. She holds a J.D. and a Ph.D. in Educational Policy from the University of Virginia.
Mary Beth Walpole is an associate professor in the Educational Leadership Department at Rowan University in Glassboro, NJ. Her Masters degree is in Administration and Policy Analysis from Stanford University and her PhD is in Higher Education and Organizational Change from UCLA.
Wynetta Y. Lee
Table of Contents
ForewordKassie FreemanIntroductionCrystal Renée Chambers, V. Barbara Bush and MaryBeth WalpolePART 1: THE PRE-COLLEGIATE AND TRANSITIONAL EXPERIENCE 1) College Predisposition and the Dilemma of Being Black and Female in High SchoolAdrienne Dixson and Crystal Renée Chambers2) “Making a Dollar out of Fifteen Cents”: The Early Educational Investments of Young Black Women Crystal Renée ChambersPART 2: THE UNDERGRADUATE EXPERIENCE3) An Asset or an Obstacle? The Power of Peers in African American Women’s College TransitionsRachelle Winkle-Wagner4) African American Female Students at Historically Black Colleges: Historical and Contemporary ConsiderationMarybeth Gasman5) African American Women at Highly Selective Colleges: How African American Campus Communities Shape ExperiencesMaryBeth WalpolePART 3: THE GRADUATE EXPERIENCE6) Professional Socialization, Politicized Raced And Gendered Experience, and Black Female Graduate Students: A Road Map for Structural TransformationV. Thandi Sulé7) Does Where They Start Matter? A Comparative Analysis of African American Women Doctoral Recipients Who Started in a Two-Year Versus a Four-Year InstitutionCarolyn Buck8) A Look Back and a Look Ahead: How to Navigate the Doctoral Degree ProcessBenita J. BarnesAfterwordWynetta Y. LeeEditors and ContributorsAppendix