Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Barnard Study Links Gender, Academic Success among Mexican Americans

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Barnard Study Links Gender, Academic Success among Mexican Americans

Article excerpt

Barnard sociology professor Dr. Robert Smith's research shows that Mexican American females are more selective when it comes to education than their male counterparts.

Interestingly, Smith's research connects the role of gender and how it leads to academic promise or academic failure.

"One of the most interesting things about this research was how gender shaped boys' and girls' experiences of their ethnicity differently in every sphere of life we studied -- at school, at home, and in the community -- and how these different experiences affected academic performance," Smith says.

Smith's research, which was based in New York City, shows that Mexican American females choose high schools that ensure greater academic success and ethnic diversity. In addition to being selective with their high school education, Mexican American females are expected to return home after school to care for their younger siblings and help with housework. Smith concludes this enables Mexican American females to be upwardly mobile professionally and to hold jobs that require communication and team-building skills. …

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