Magazine article The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education

Finding Inspiration and Encouragement on My Academic Path

Magazine article The Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education

Finding Inspiration and Encouragement on My Academic Path

Article excerpt

Starting a doctoral program at the University of Pittsburgh immediately following my undergraduate program allowed me to see firsthand the reality described by the statistics that filled much of the articles I read about Latinas/os pushed out through the cracks of the educational pipeline. Indeed, entering the doctorate proved to be an entrance into a white academic space: with students and faculty. My start at Pitt leftme longing for what I experienced at my first American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education (AAHHE) gathering at the annual 2015 American Educational Research Association (AERA) conference in Chicago. In fact, because of that introduction to AAHHE's professional familia, I saw that the quality of AAHHE's work would provide the right foundational support for my further matriculation in the field of education.

At AERA in Chicago, I noticed that AAHHE members appreciated the importance of sitting together as a way to foster fellowship, support and camaraderie. Several of the fellows who interacted with me, offering me advice about the doctoral process and the importance of my own research agenda, especially inspired me. Simply being a part of such a gathering was significant because not only did I find myself interacting with such an organization, but I was also being encouraged to follow the academic path I was already traveling. That single gathering affirmed my belief that helping other Latinas/os is one of the most important responsibilities of our community. …

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