Challenges African American Women Face Essay

Decent Essays
The landscape of leadership by people of color, African American women in particular, at the helm of universities and colleges is shifting, however at a much slower pace than the growth of a diverse student population. With increases in undergraduate enrollment and degree attainment, the post baccalaureate degree achievement of women of color, specifically African American women, has shown steady growth with 1.4% of African American women obtaining a Master of Arts degree in 1995 to 5.2% in 2008 (National Center for Educational Statistics [NCES], 2009).
In 1977, the doctoral degree attainment for African American women was 6% and slightly increased to 8.1% in 2007 (NCES, 2008). With this minimal increase in advanced degree attainment over the past 30 years of African American women, there are greater numbers who aspire to and chose careers in higher education administration. These senior level academic roles ranked within the administration and faculty related areas of colleges and universities. These positions include, but are not limited to president, chancellor, provost, assistant/associate, dean, and departmental chairpersons.
Regardless of
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Some of the major challenges that African American women face in higher education are (a) being able to balance family, community, and career (b) hiring and promotion (c) sexism and racism and (d) isolation and tokenism. First, I will begin this the literature review with a brief explanation of how the literature review was conducted. Second, I will provide a historical synopsis of African American women in higher education. Third, I will discuss the barriers affecting African American women administrators in higher education associated with recruitment, retention and
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