Testimonios of First-Generation, Multilingual, Latina Doctoral Students at the U.S.-México Border

Cynthia Carolina Terán López, University of Texas at El Paso


This qualitative study is developed with the idea that the socialization experiences of Latina doctoral students are found in the socially constructed institutional culture of a university at the U.S.-México border. Furthermore, Latina doctoral students are considered active agents in their development as scholars and co-creators of culture. Thus, this study looks at Latina doctoral students’ ways of knowing as assets used to shape their experiences in a way that benefits and empowers them. Specifically, the study expands on the existing research on socialization experiences at the doctoral level to explore the understudied significance of language and being a first-generation doctoral student. Data were derived from testimonio interviews and pláticas with six Latina doctoral students at different stages in their doctoral programs. Data collection and analysis occurred using testimonios as a methodology within a Chicana feminist epistemology and a Latina Critical framework. Findings are presented as participant testimonios that was co-authored with the participants. The most salient socialization experiences narrated by the participants included mentorship, family support, colleague support, and apprenticeship opportunities.

Subject Area

Education|Multicultural Education|Womens studies|Educational evaluation

Recommended Citation

Terán López, Cynthia Carolina, "Testimonios of First-Generation, Multilingual, Latina Doctoral Students at the U.S.-México Border" (2022). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI29207025.