Student involvement at a majority Hispanic, border institution: A study of undergraduate student experiences

Gary Edens, University of Texas at El Paso


This study examines the extracurricular involvement experiences of students enrolled at a university located on the United States - Mexico border. During the twenty-first century, the United States will continue to become increasingly heterogeneous with respect to the racial composition of its population. Demographic changes will have an increasing impact in all areas of society as previously designated minorities become the majority populations in their cities, states, indeed the nation. On the United States - Mexico border, where Hispanics far outnumber other ethnic and racial groups, this has already happened. As the border area has grown in population many have failed to recognize the growing influence that Hispanics from the border area are having on the policy, politics and demographics of the United States. The number of Hispanic students attending postsecondary education in the United States has tripled since 1980. Institutions of higher education along the U.S. - Mexico border have also experienced significant growth in the number of Mexican-National students choosing to study at American colleges and universities. In this research study, I examined the involvement experiences of undergraduate students attending a public, four-year University located on the United States - Mexico border. How do students enrolled at a border institution view their college experiences? What are the characteristics of student involvement at a border institution? How does a student's cultural background impact his or her involvement in and perception of higher education? I approached my topic qualitatively gathering data from focus groups and student interviews. This study adds to the growing body of literature on student retention, involvement and academic success.

Subject Area

School administration|Hispanic Americans|Higher education

Recommended Citation

Edens, Gary, "Student involvement at a majority Hispanic, border institution: A study of undergraduate student experiences" (2007). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI3262916.