EXPERIENCES OF BLACK-AFRICAN INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS IN HISTORICALLY BLACK COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES (HBCUs) AND IN HISTORICALLY WHITE COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES (HWCUs) IN THE UNITED STATES: A NARRATIVE INQUIRY

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2022-05

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Abstract

In this study, the experiences of Black-African international college students (BAIS) in Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and the experiences of BAIS in Historically White Colleges and Universities (HWCUs) in the United States was explored. This study reveals the narratives of BAIS regarding their racial acculturation experiences and ethnic acculturation experiences at their HBCU and HWCU campuses. Former BAIS graduate students (presently alumni) who studied in HBCUs and HWCUs in the United States were interviewed. Data obtained from interviews with the former BAIS were analyzed through Polkinghorne’s analysis of narratives, which is also known as paradigmatic mode of analysis. Analysis of the interview transcripts was done to identify the relationships and commonalities. The results indicated that Black African international students experienced racial discrimination at both HBCUs and at HWCUs, faced challenges in relationships and group involvement, and that the type of institutions affected racial dynamics of the learners. The experiences of BAIS at HBCUs and at HWCUs are similar in many ways. They attest that racial discrimination exists in institutions of higher learning in the United States. Financial, socio-cultural, and academic challenges are seen as the main ingredients to racial discrimination. It is recommended that both HBCUs and HWCUs should increase their efforts of curbing racism within their communities. These efforts may include addressing racism in campus life; assisting BAIS with navigating racial dynamics of campus life through enhancing campus racial climates; addressing racism against BAIS in the classroom, through faculty intervention/training and U.S. student awareness; ensuring adequate institutional support, financially and socioculturally; combatting BAIS negative self-perceptions; and increasing interaction opportunities between BAIS and African Americans, particularly in HWCUs with few African American students.

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Keywords

Black-African international students' acculturation experiences; racism; Black-African international students' needs

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