Published Papers

Journal_of_Hispanic_Higher_Education_Journal_Front_Cover“Es como una Familia”: Bridging emotional support with academic and professional development through the acquisition of capital in Latinx student organzations

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This study explores the ways Latinx-based organizations assist students in navigatingcollege and career preparation. Data consist of in-depth interviews with 17 first-generation Latinx students attending two predominantly White institutions in the Midwest. I employed Bourdieu’s social reproduction theory to examine the ways Latinx student organizations cultivate social and cultural capital among participants. Findings reveal that peers in Latinx-based organizations share capital relevant to navigating college, academics, and career development.


JCSD new coverPerson First, Student Second: Staff and Administrators of Color Supporting Students of Color Authentically in Higher Education

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In this qualitative study I explored the mentoring roles of staff and administrators for first-generation Black, Latinx, and Biracial students. Social reproduction theory (which assesses how inequality is perpetuated or disrupted generationally) was used to analyze social capital cultivated by mentors. Staff of Color nurtured the capital that students brought with them to college, and because of this students often turned to the staff for other forms of support, which opened the door for acquisition of cultural capital. White staff focused almost exclusively on students’ academic experiences, neglecting their backgrounds. Supporting students holistically and valuing their backgrounds establish authentic relationships that support students’ success.


dhe-150Colorblind mentoring? Exploring white faculty mentoring of students of color.

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In this critical multisite case study we examined the concept of colorblind mentoring. Using Bonilla-Silva’s Colorblind Racism Frames, we sought to understand White faculty members’ perspectives on their mentoring of Students of Color. The findings revealed that White faculty members often engage with students from a “colorblind perspective.” Their use of race-neutral, colorblind language (avoiding racial terms but implying them) allowed White faculty members to describe their students as academically inferior, less prepared, and less interested in pursuing research and graduate studies while potentially ignoring structural causes. Faculty perceptions of students may influence the way Students of Color perceive their academic abilities and potential to achieve success in STEM disciplines and in graduate education.