Black Students in Higher Education

Black Students in Higher Education

Black Students in Higher Education

Black Students in Higher Education

Synopsis

Stikes describes the academic, personal, social, financial, and racial identity problems of 16 black students on predominantly white college campuses. He discusses the students' attempts to cope, noting developmental changes that occurred as they grappled with their environment; he outlines counseling strategies, teaching processes, and focuses on the policies and practices needed to assist black students.

The 16 case studies represent the spectrum of black students in higher education. Data from these cases form the basis for the construction of a model describing black student development. The model illustrates the continuous, predictable, and dynamic processes involved.

From this model the impact of race and culture is illustrated, showing the qualitative and quantitative difference between black student development and student development in general. Further, the model shows the impact of role models and social factors on students.

Excerpt

Black student are having a very busy and difficult time on campuses throughout the country. Plagued by financial problems, difficulties in studies, personal-social concerns, and racial identity problems, these students are experiencing stress in adapting to and reshaping their social and physical environment, sometimes with sympathetic assistance and sometimes without; and they are having to work through these problems in a process that did not originally take them into account.

Black students have been studied extensively, but these studies have not assisted student development educators in understanding the black experience on predominantly white campuses (where the majority of blacks are enrolled) because many of these studies have not been related to the development process in the college environment. Also, many of these studies have looked at black students as merely victims of a system without looking at ways in which to use the strengths of the cultural backgrounds of the students to work against the problems of the higher education system. in many instances, the victims were blamed for their plights as though they were deficient individuals. This situation may have existed because there has not been a framework by which to examine the cultural backgrounds of the students and their implications for educational development. Another aspect of the problem is that there does not exist a comprehensive theoretical . . .

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