Date of Award

4-2014

Document Type

Campus Access Thesis

College

College of Theology, Arts, & Sciences

Department

Psychology

Degree Name

Psychology, BA

First Supervisor

Erin Mueller, PhD

Keywords

retention, minority students, sense of community, financial assistance

Abstract

Students are departing from college for many reasons, and the risk becomes higher for minority students (Saenz, Marcoulides, Junn, & Young, 1999). This study included 137 participants (28 males, 109 females, M age = 19.9 years, age range: 18-27 years) who completed an online survey. This sample included 99 students from Hawaiʻi who are attending college in Oregon. There were 7 participants in the phone interviews; 5 of which were from Hawaiʻi. A Chi-Square (X2) test was used to determine that there was no significant difference between type of student on the influence of sense of community X2 (3, N = 137) = 3.57, p = .31, parent emotional support X2 (3, N = 137) = 2.42, p = .49, and peer emotional support X2 (3, N = 137) = 2.67, p = .45. The 3 most important factors for Hawaiʻi students were their perceived self-efficacy (M = 1.30), financial assistance from parents or family (M = 1.36), and financial assistance from government loans, scholarships, and grants (M = 1.39). During the interviews, all students described a sense of community that influenced their decision to remain at their institution. Colleges need to offer opportunities where connections can be made and students can feel as if they belong.

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