The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 2 - 32

Michelle L. Boettcher * Kurt Earnest * Angel Eason * Leslie Lewis

(Gossett et al., 1998; Harwood et al., 2012;
Nadal, Griffin, Wong, Hamit, & Rasmus, 2014;
Turner, 1994), and a lack of belonging (Hotchkins, 2014; Hotchkins & Dancy, 2015; Johnson,
Wasserman, Yildirim, & Yonai, 2014; Oliver,
Rodriguez, & Mickelson, 1985; Spanierman et
al., 2013; Yosso et al., 2009). This study sought
to disrupt deficit frameworks and fill the gap in
the literature by using self-efficacy to explore
how Students of Color at predominantly White
institutions (PWIs) cultivate networks of
support.
Bandura (1995) described self-efficacy as
"striving for control over life circumstances"
(p. 1). Self-efficacy has been used in higher
education to mean "a student's degree of confidence that they could successfully complete
a given college-related task" (Solberg, O'Brien,
Villareal, Kennel, & Davis, 1993, p. 80) and
"the intersection of skills and confidence"
(Curry-Stevens, 2011, p. 11). Bandura (1977)
found that studying student self-efficacy was
most effective when done in a specific context,
and a variety of studies have called for further
research about the connections between institutional environments and student socialization (Arana, CastaƱeda-Sound, Blanchard, &
Aguilar, 2011; Crisp, Taggart, & Nora, 2015;
Hurtado, Alvarado, & Guillermo-Wann, 2015;
Nettles & Johnson, 1987; Patton, Harper, &
Harris, 2015). For this study, Students of Color
discussed their support networks in the context
of residential life at a Midwestern PWI.
Research has shown that relationships
matter in student persistence and success. In
residential communities, success increased
due to a sense of belonging; peer, faculty, and
staff interactions; and increased engagement
(Astin, 1977; Bowman, 2010; Bozick, 2007;
32

Participants . . . developed their
identities and skills as race and
social justice educators through
interactions with roommates.

Chickering, 1974; Kahu, 2013; Pascarella &
Terenzini, 1991, 2005; Strayhorn, 2008, 2012).
This makes residential communities ideal for
exploring student networks of support.
There are few studies on Students of Color
and their residential experiences. Flowers
(2004) wrote that African American students
benefit personally, socially, and developmentally from residential communities, while
Denson and Chang (2009) found that there is
value to students, faculty, and staff across racial
identities when relationships develop between
people different from one another. However,
they also found that self-efficacy for all students "tends to be stronger on campuses that
have larger proportions of underrepresented
students" (Denson & Chang, 2009, p. 342) and
suggested that further study was needed.
This qualitative case study explored the
following research question: How do Students of Color develop networks of support
in residence hall settings at PWIs? The findings of this study at one specific PWI are not
intended to represent the perspectives of all
Students of Color at all PWIs. The case study
method of inquiry is appropriate here as this
study "investigates a contemporary phenomenon within its real-life context" (Yin, 2008,
p. 18). The bounded system (Stake, 2005) for
this case study is the experience of Students

THE JOURNAL OF COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY STUDENT HOUSING



The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 2

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 2

Contents
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 2 - Intro
The Journal of College and University Student Housing - Volume 45, No. 2 - Cover1
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