Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Alienation to activism: Liberatory lessons of transformation from alternative education youth
by Nusom, Angela, Ed.D., Lewis and Clark College, 2012, 293; 3547575
Abstract (Summary)

Although often not recognized, young people and educators have a rich history of being at the forefront of social change movements. During the civil rights era youth were involved at every level and historians laud the efforts of young people during the Obama campaign, citing their energy and cutting edge technology as a key tool of his victory. This study raises the visibility of the youth experience within schools and privileges their knowledge to inform educational practice within alternative schools.

Using a constructivist grounded theory methodology and a theoretical framework of liberatory education, this qualitative study examines the experiences of five alternative school youth who collaborated with high school teachers and college professors to develop and facilitate the Early College Access Advocacy Project (ECAAP). Their individual and collective journey from school alienation to activism for educational access reveals a theory of transformation from the inside out as youth translated their internal experiences, motivations, and passions into external action to change their community.

As their stories tell, the transformation from school alienation to activism for education did not emerge from magic, or from one phenomenal experience. Rather, it occurred through a series of relationships and opportunities that served as entry points for engagement. Participant reflections, insights, and critical observations of schools raise provocative questions about the role of marginalized youth in educational reform.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: McGhee, Marla
Commitee: Brown, Andrae L., Galloway, Mollie
School: Lewis and Clark College
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Oregon
Source: DAI-A 74/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership
Keywords: Alternative education, Freirean pedagogy, Grounded theory, Systemic change, Transformative education, Youth leadership
Publication Number: 3547575
ISBN: 978-1-267-82343-4
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