THE CHANGING LANDSCAPE OF NEW ENGLAND COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES: WHAT FACTORS ARE ASSOCIATED WITH THE RETENTION OF BLACK, LATINX, AND WHITE STUDENTS?
Committee memberDi Benedetto, Anthony
Hill , Theodore
Higher education administration
New England region
POC Student Retention
Supportive programs on retention
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12613/6548
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AbstractLong-term declines in birth rates pose a threat to the economic viability of higher education institutions (HEIs), and these institutions must strategically plan for these changes. Increasing the enrollment and retention of underrepresented Black and Latinx students is one potential strategy to offset declining numbers of high-school graduates. While educational attainment has increased overall during the last two decades, Black and Latinx students continue to have lower educational attainment levels than White students. This study uses quantitative data from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from 2000 to 2018 to estimate enrollment and retention levels of Black, Latinx, and White students in Higher Educational Institutions (HEIs) in the New England Region (NER). The study estimates correlations between Black, Latinx, and White enrollment and retention levels, revealing a negative impact on Black and Latinx enrollment and retention as White enrollment increases. This research likewise reveals a decrease in White enrollment as Black and Latinx enrollment increases. Additionally, this study uses a K-means cluster analysis to understand the association between enrollment and retention level performance of NER HEIs. Findings from two different cluster analyses show 1) a negative pattern of retention of Blacks and Latinx students as enrollment for these populations increases in HEIs and 2) a positive retention pattern for a subset of HEIs with higher retention levels with lower numbers of Black and Latinx enrollment totals. This proposal describes and interprets these findings and proposes new research examining institutional characteristics that may give rise to Blacks and Latinx students' retention levels. This study considers a wide range of institutional characteristics, including supportive programming and the types of financial aid packages specifically designed to retain students, while accounting for endowment and institutional size. This dissertation aims to provide NER HEI administrators with data that can inform short and long-term strategic planning.
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