The African American Woman: Shaping of a Leader in Higher Education
History and Struggles of Women in Higher Education
The purpose of this literature review is to explore challenges, experiences, and successful strategies that African American women have encountered in the shaping of leadership in higher education. This review focuses on the history and struggles of women in higher education, male dominance, and African American women who have become successful in leadership roles. Some of the literature reviewed suggests that if efforts are not made to support the upward mount of African American women in leadership positions, the possibility of the decrease in this population is inevitable.
In 1834, Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio was the only institution that did not discriminate in the admission of students due to race or sex (Watson, 1977). This institution admitted four young women into a core curriculum, allowing for Oberlin College to be the first co-educational school of higher education in the country (Watson, 1977). Although the opportunity existed for women to enter the doors of higher education, enrollment in the college did not guarantee equality. Women who enrolled in the college had very limited social freedom, could only enroll in specific majors, and were not given the same level of consideration and respect as their male counter parts (Watson, 1977). Women were limited to studying fields such as education. Professions such as medicine, law, and religion