African American College Students and The Obstacles to Graduation

Date of Award


Document Type


First Advisor

Rebecca Overmyer- Velazquez


The purpose of this study is to examine why or why not African American students are successful in the journey to graduate college. When dealing with success and failure for African Americans in college studies have related things to crimes, drugs, gangs, financial problems, and the lack of college preparation. However what research has overlooked are the different outcomes in their life that impact black student’s success in higher education. There is also less information on African American women compared to men. To gather data for this lack of research I conducted 10 interviews, 5 women and 5 men. The interviews are with college students attending different Institutions such as private institutions, State, Universities, and also Historically black colleges. This will assist colleges and universities by addressing the strengths and weakness of programs plus policies in place that support black students success. I have found a lot of data about African American students and what they feel should be implemented in the institutions that they are at, such as: More programs, classes, more opportunity, as well as equality. With more positive outlets my respondents feel that the environment that they are in, as well as the more options that they have such as listed will only allow them to have more positive reinforcement. They will also feel more support and a sense of comfort that the people around them care.


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