Leveraging Institutional Articulation Agreements to Support Collegiate Pathways for Black Males

Leveraging Institutional Articulation Agreements to Support Collegiate Pathways for Black Males

Jerry L. Wallace (University of Houston-Downtown, USA) and Jessica Thompson Falla (University of St. Thomas, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-4108-1.ch011
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Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to highlight the importance of how articulation agreements between collaborating institutions influence departmental curriculum, retention strategies to support marginalized groups, and how they can be a mechanism to disrupt institutional racism in an effort to support Black male academic persistence. Partnerships among institutions can help foster strategic alignment for overall student success and impact marginalized groups. Chickering and Reiser argued that seven key factors related to environmental influences exercise dominant stimuli on student development. The key factors explored in this chapter are institutional objectives, student-faculty relationships, curriculum, teaching, friendships and student communities, student development programs and services, and integration of work and learning. Williams and Wood referenced that persistence research should not focus completely on the student's involvement within the institution, but also on the institution's role in assisting student outcomes, namely Black male students of color.
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Background Of The Problem

Policy and strategic planning often dictate the goals and outcomes of institutions as they attempt to increase enrollment, retention and graduation rates for students. Agreements are made during state education political reform and laws are outlined at legislative hearings that will determine what resources institutions will be provided in effort to implement educational reform. What is not outlined is how institutions will impact social justice, decrease institutional historic racism, support cultural and community enrichment, and decrease the cradle to grave and school to prison pipeline. These topics are often left to institutions themselves to determine how they will or if they will engage in these areas. As demographics are changing all across the United States where diversity is becoming more of a common term and more people of color quickly move from a minority population to a majority population, Black males at all levels still remain at the bottom of any positive social hierarchy and at the top of any social inequity (Young & Austin, 1996). Young and Austin (1996) did a case study of Black male degree achievement for 1991 as compared to 1977. They presented data that in 1977 Black males earned 7,781 master's degrees and 766 Ph.Ds, whereas in 1991, they earned 5,707 masters degrees and 582 Ph.D.s. Their research indicated that the number represented only little more than an average of 11 Ph.D.s per state for Black males, and pointed out the lingering problem of Black male underrepresentation in graduate schools across the nation. In 2017, the U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) indicated that the 6-year graduation rate was higher for females than for males overall (63% vs. 57%) within each racial/ethnic group (NCES, Winter 2016-2017, 2019). The gender gap was narrowest among Pacific Islander students (53% for females vs. 50% for males) and widest among Black students (44% for females vs. 34% for males). In the twenty-six years from 1991 to 2017, Black males were consistently at the bottom of college graduates.

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