Date of Award

Spring 7-23-2021




Doctor of Education

Degree Type

Doctor of Education in Curriculum and Leadership


Teacher Education

First Advisor

Dr. Tina Butcher, PhD

Second Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Lovelace, PhD

Third Advisor

Dr. Margie Yates, PhD


Since 1954, Black females were presented with the opportunity to earn an education equivalent to non-Black females. Despite the challenges, Black females have made significant strides in their academic performance by attaining degrees at every level over the years.

The purpose of the study is to explore factors that affected the retention and graduation rates of Black female undergraduate students enrolled at a Predominantly White Institution. The researcher will conduct an exploratory single-case study to explore Black female undergraduate students' barriers to retention during their college experience. The sample included 10 Black female undergraduate students and three staff members from academic and non-academic student support services on the campus of SEU. The findings of the study indicate that the Black female undergraduate student participants have encountered at least one challenge that had a potential effect on their college persistence. Many student participants were not aware of the student support services available to them or did not feel comfortable using the services for assistance. Black female undergraduate students need to be engaged and build relationships to encourage them and develop a sense of belonging at a PWI. For some Black female undergraduate students, it may be necessary for PWIs to provide intentional support for student support services for the population to benefit from available services.