Open Access Dissertation
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Leadership and Counseling
Dr. Ronald Williamson, Chairperson
Dr. Nelson Maylone
Dr. Theresa Saunders
Dr. Jaclynn Tracy
Analysis of the data revealed the importance of relationships at the heart of each of the interviewee's responses with a family member or neighbor who encouraged and supported at home; a principal who encouraged them to consider a specific high school and then continued to follow them through their high school experience; an advisor who guided them during all four of their high school years; teachers, who not only challenged, supported, and encouraged during classroom hours, but also opened the door of their classrooms before and after school to be in deeper relationship with their students; or a community program that welcomed and mentored students. Relationships were perceived to be key to the students' ability to persist. Rigorous academic programs were important; they encouraged the development of personal knowledge and skills and pushed students beyond their own perceptions of ability. The student voice heard in this study makes clear, however, that it is relationships that have the potential to keep individuals engaged and persisting on the path toward graduation even in the face of great adversity and overwhelming odds.
Maodush-Pitzer, Diane Joy, "Voices of persistence: Stories of success from one urban public charter high school" (2015). Master's Theses and Doctoral Dissertations. 661.