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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Support and guidance: The experiences of first-generation college students at a private university
by Montes, Roberto Emmanuel, M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2016, 88; 10196534
Abstract (Summary)

This ethnographic study addressed two effective programs designed to assist first-time underrepresented college students navigate and successfully graduate from a private four-year university. This study also addressed how small universities can often reach out to first-generation college students even when these students apply too late for special programs. It focuses on incoming-freshmen on their first semester of their freshmen year and on Alumnae. I explore how students’ transitions from high school to a four-year university are bounded by a variety of factors within the school's structural organization. By taking an anthropological framework, my qualitative research explores behavior and perspectives about the transition of First Generation College students (FGCs) and how support systems can enable these students to stay enrolled in college.

Findings indicate four major themes that enabled students to successfully graduate or enroll into the subsequent semester: 1) social support; 2) social capital; 3) importance of mentor, 4) importance of FGCs programs. The research process utilizes participant observation and interviews in uncovering the role that these support programs play in the transition of these students. Questions were posed for further research and recommendations were made for implementation by the university programs evaluated in this thesis.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: LeMaster, Barbara
Commitee: Klein, Wendy, Loewe, Ronald
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Anthropology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 56/02M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational evaluation, Education, Higher education
Keywords: First-generation, Mentors, Social capital, Social support, Transition
Publication Number: 10196534
ISBN: 978-1-369-35640-3
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