OSR Journal of Student Research

Article Title

Systematic Predictors of Latina College Students’ Empowerment


The Latinx population is a rapidly growing group in the United States. Latina women encounter a variety of barriers that prevent them from empowerment (e.g. discrimination, violence, poverty, and mental health issues). Given the barriers Latina women face, understanding how they empower themselves to navigate their environments seems relevant. Various studies have analyzed mental health issues among Latinas, but fewer researchers have investigated Latina women’s empowerment. Empowerment can help women increase awareness of their rights and exert influence on decisions that impact their lives (Bustamante-Gavino, Rattani, & Khan, 2011). Empowerment can be defined as the awareness among groups who are marginalized to help them to get control over their lives by obtaining enough resources to construct their personal skills and power (McWhirter,1991; 1994). Environmental systems play a role in empowerment. Bronfenbrenner (1981) classified different types of systems to represent the ecological model which are the microsystem, the mesosystem, the exosystem, and the macrosystem. In the current study, we sought to understand how environmental factors from various levels in Bronfenbrenner’s model such as family gender roles, cultural gender roles, family support for education, objectifying media, non-family support, and family support might impact Latina women empowerment. Participants (N = 200 females) were selected throughout the online research management system SONA at California State University of San Bernardino. They will answer a number of surveys which will be randomized using Qualtrics. Data collection and analysis is ongoing.

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