Factors influencing the academic progression of African American male students in selected North Carolina Universities

Dorrance Kennedy, Fayetteville State University


The purpose of this study was to examine the factors that African American males perceived as influencing their retention in higher education. The purpose was also to discover African American males' perceptions of their freshman year experiences and how the university's initiatives influenced their decision to return their sophomore year. Finally, the purpose of this study was to determine the personal and institutional characteristics that influenced African American males' retention. This was a qualitative study with 15 African American males who were enrolled in three universities in the University of North Carolina system. The data were collected using face-to-face interviews of approximately 45 minutes duration that took place on two separate occasions. The participants responded honestly and appeared eager to discuss their experiences as a freshman and the factors that influenced them to return to the university a second year. Several recurring themes emerged from their responses: (a) supportive university personnel, (b) student involvement in campus activities, (c) peer support and mentoring, (d) student diversity, (e) campus resources, (f) supplemental instruction, (g) male initiatives, (h) school spirit, (i) academic programs, (j) customer service, (k) financial aid, (1) advisement, (m) determination, (n) parents and siblings/families and extended families, (o) spiritual support, and (p) influence of parents and siblings. For improved generalizability and reliability, replication of this study at other institutions of higher learning is recommended.

Subject Area

Higher Education Administration|Educational leadership|School administration

Recommended Citation

Kennedy, Dorrance, "Factors influencing the academic progression of African American male students in selected North Carolina Universities" (2015). ETD Collection for Fayetteville State University. AAI10041314.