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Journal of Applied Research in Community Colleges. Peer-Reviewed Since 1993

FALL 2021 - VOLUME 28, ISSUE 2

I Need You to See All of Me: Latinx Students from Mixed-Immigration-Status Families Speak Out on School and Work Roles and Offer Lessons for Latinx Community College Leaders

Lisette Nieves, New York University

The tension between the “College for All” consensus and “School-to-Work” campaign has created an unnecessary trade-off between the commitments and demands of school and the need and desire for students to work. The result is an educational and employment landscape that diminishes the centrality of work to students’ engagement and purpose. Young Latinx students from low-income, first-generation, mixed-immigration-status families are often left to piece together low-wage jobs entirely unrelated to their degrees, with minimal opportunity for career advancement or increased social capital. Through analysis of higher-education policies on college readiness and work-based learning at the community college level, and through illustrative interviews of young (ages 18-24), Latinx community college students from mixed-immigration-status families, this article a) examines the worker lens of these students, which, for them, functions as an identity that manifests in students who value school and work equally while priding themselves on their work ethic and on their contribution to their families, and, b) explores innovative solutions for Latinx leaders to consider in their efforts to support both the academic and career success of Latinx students.

Keywords: Latinx leadership; work; mixed immigration status

Nieves, L. (2021). I need you to see all of me: Latinx students from mixed-immigration-status families speak out on school and work roles and offer lessons for Latinx community college leaders. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 1-16.

Latina Senior Leaders in California Community Colleges: Leadership as Disruption and Resistance

Ruby Sangha-Rico, California State University, Fresno
Susana Hernández, California State University, Fresno

This qualitative research study explores the gendered, racialized, and disruptive experiences of five Latina women serving in positions of senior leadership within California’s two-year learning institutions. Employing narrative-inquiry methodology, the researchers aimed to understand the relationship between gender and racialization and the ways in which Latina leaders respond to the organizational norms embedded within the state’s public higher-education system. Interpreted through the positionality of each researcher’s lens, the retelling of participant stories brought forth the following patterns: (a) the surveillance of gendered and racialized identities through socially coded expectations and norms; (b) the managing of these expectations while also carrying additional burdens as Latina women leaders; and (c) leading as transformational disruptors empowered by their gendered and racial identities.

Keywords: Latina; senior leadership; community colleges; gendered; racialized; disruption

Sangha-Rico, R., & Hernández, S. (2021). Latina senior leaders in California community colleges: Leadership as disruption and resistance. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 17-32.

Leadership Implications for Aspiring Latinx Community College Leaders: Firsthand Accounts from Community College Presidents

Jorge Burmicky, Howard University

Although more Latinx students are enrolling in postsecondary education than ever before, the percentage of Latinx college presidents has decreased in the last decade. Through a hermeneutical phenomenological approach, this study used applied critical leadership as a theoretical framework to develop implications for practice tailored to support aspiring Latinx community college leaders. Participants in this study included nine community college presidents and chancellors from across the country who identified as Latinx men. Findings underscore the importance that mentoring had in the career trajectory of Latinx college presidents. Furthermore, mentorship looked different for all participants, and tangible examples of mentorship are offered in this study. Last, leadership institutes and programs were central to the success of the participants. In particular, these programs were critical in cementing their desire to become community college presidents, especially as many struggled with self-confidence and impostor syndrome.

Keywords: community college presidency; Latinx leadership; phenomenology; applied critical leadership

Burmicky, J. (2021). Leadership implications for aspiring Latinx community college leaders: Firsthand accounts from community college presidents. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 33-48.

A Culturally Tailored Latinx Leadership Program: Diversifying the Nation’s Community College Presidency

Reyes L. Quezada, University of San Diego
Ted Martinez, Jr., San Diego State University

This paper discusses the need for tailored leadership training as a tool for developing culturally proficient Latinx leaders in community colleges, particularly at upper-level administrative ranks. There is an increasing need to answer the long-standing call for community college leadership reflective of the current student demographic it serves. We highlight the National Community College Hispanic Council (NCCHC) Leadership Fellows Program (LFP), which provides culturally tailored training and mentoring for community college leaders. The LFP has prepared more than 250 community college administrators. Training topics include the role of critical race theory, cultural proficiency, equity, and diversity. Notably, 83% of NCCHC fellows came from Hispanic- Serving Institutions, and the fellows’ promotion rate and their effect on diversifying the administrative ranks has been noted as a model program.

Keywords: national community college Hispanic council; national community college Hispanic council leadership fellows program; community college leadership programs; Latino leadership programs; Latinx community college leaders

Quezada, R. L., & Martinez, T., Jr. (2021). A culturally tailored Latinx leadership program: Diversifying the nation’s community college presidency. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 49-70.

Statewide Leadership and Community Building in California Community Colleges

Mark Sanchez, Southwestern College
M. Angélica Garcia, Berkeley City College
Cynthia Olivo, Pasadena City College

Historically, California Community Colleges’ Latinx leadership development programs have not existed on a system-wide level. These efforts have been primarily developed and implemented at local colleges for their specific personnel, based on demand. With the set of complex opportunities and challenges that exist in institutions of higher education, it is essential for today’s professionals to have access to leadership development and professional growth programs that are grounded in an equity framework, including a Latinx lens. Programs that seek to increase the personal and professional development of Latinx community college leaders having an emphasis on cultural pride and honoring ancestral consejos (knowledge). This practice brief outlines the history and operational steps taken in the formation of statewide leadership and community-building programs for Latinx professionals in the California Community Colleges system. Key components of the program are highlighted, and recommendations for it to be replicated are provided.

Keywords: Latina/o/x; Latinx; leadership; community college; professional development

Sanchez, M., Garcia, M. A., & Olivo, C. (2021). Statewide leadership and community building in California community colleges. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 71-82.

Mamis Rising: Challenging the Narrative of Who Belongs in Community College Administration

Mayra Olivares-Urueta, Texas Christian University

This practice brief shares insight by Dr. Mayra Olivares-Urueta on the purpose and vision behind the blog Mamis on the Move, which she created with Dr. Taryn Ozuna Allen in April 2020 amid the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic. The blog aims demystify the adage that mothers, especially Latinas, cannot or do not want to lead in higher education. Through their blog, the women humanize their roles as leaders who juggle many responsibilities in their academic, professional, and home lives. Contextualized through literature about Latinas and mothers in higher education leadership, Dr. Olivares-Urueta shares her testimonio (testimony), giving voice to her experience rising to and serving as a vice president in a community college while raising two young children. Recommendations are provided to Latina mothers considering executive leadership, to supervisors of Latina mothers in higher education, to professional organizations providing leadership development, and to researchers.

Keywords: Latinas; mothers; executive leaders; community colleges; higher education

Olivares-Urueta, M. (2021). Mamis rising: Challenging the narrative of who belongs in community college administration. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 83-96.

Advancing Latinx Leadership at California Community Colleges

Ángel de Jesus González, University of Southern California

Although community colleges continue to enroll students from various historically minoritized identities at a higher rate (first-gen, LGBTQIA+, students of color) in contrast to any other sector of higher education, their leadership fails to reflect these demographics. As one of the largest community college systems, California Community Colleges can play a vital role in leading the way for how they support, recruit, retain, and value Latinx leaders, those who are both queer and trans and part of the Latina/o community and represent their students’ intersecting identities. This practice briefs pulls from a subset of dissertation data and presents implications for policy and practice to advance efforts to support Latinx leadership at community colleges. Implications for policy and recommendations for practice include leveraging policy for action, improving hiring practices, developing the position posting, forming the hiring committee, and expanding, revamping, and establishing caminos (paths).

Keywords: queer; Latinx; leadership; community colleges; LGBTQIA+

González, A. d. J. (2021). Advancing Latinx leadership at California community colleges. Journal of Applied Research in the Community College, 28(2), 97-110.