The Educational Journeys of American Indian Women: Forming Aspirations for Higher Education (pp. 21-39)

Maureen Snow Andrade


American Indians (AIs) have lower higher education enrollment and completion rates than Whites and most minority groups. AI women, however, participate at higher rates than AI men, White women, and White men. Research has not examined what contributes to their higher education aspirations. This study explored the middle and high school experiences of educationally successful AI women to determine how academic factors-activities within and beyond school and relations with peers, teachers, and counselors-affected their enrollment decisions. Findings indicate that academic engagement, community and culture, resiliency to challenges, and knowledge of higher education contribute to aspirations. Implications are discussed.


American Indian; women; higher education; aspirations

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