The author of this document has limited its availability to on-campus or logged-in CSUSB users only.

Off-campus CSUSB users: To download restricted items, please log in to our proxy server with your MyCoyote username and password.

Date of Award


Document Type

Restricted Dissertation: Campus only access

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership



First Reader/Committee Chair

Acevedo-Gil, Nancy.


The number of African American and Latino students in two-year community colleges increased over the last decade; in spite of the enrollment successes, community college retention and persistence is still an illusion for majority of students. A Johns Hopkins University study estimated the lower retention rate as the most pressing challenge in higher education, but much less clear is how to resolve the problem and promote graduation success for ethnic minority students. This multiple case study represents a new phase of research which promotes effective remedies for community college retention and persistence. The study is a reflective analysis of data from two pertinent factors; the institutional characteristics which is associated with post-secondary outcomes, and the individual factors which facilitated retention and completion. The purpose of the qualitative case study was to develop a data-driven framework for future research and to examine community college best practices which facilitated effective remedies in moving students of color towards degree completion. The overarching goal of the study was to identify how African American and Latino students in particular experienced college success, but even more so to the extent in which such successes were the results of the attributes and contributions of the college institution they attended. Overall, twenty-eight African American and Latino students from the Clarence College of Southern California facilitated the objectives of the study. The research participants presented their views of student success through qualitative narratives (semi-structured interviews) and a journal response activity. The criteria for participant selection or the interview protocol included the demographic information of the research participants such as their age, gender, race, ethnicity, enrollment status, G.P.A and units completed. The study allowed the research participants to present their views on community college retention and completion, either positive or negative and to suggest possible recommendations for future research.