Date of Conferral







Stephen Rice


AbstractThe interactions a student has with a teacher help form their relationship with the educational experience. Importantly, a lack of representation can greatly impact the future impression of oneself and the world. For students of color, the balance of teachers who represent their ethnic and cultural diversity in the education field is greatly skewed toward White educators. The purpose of this quantitative correlational study, which was rooted in the self-determination theory, was to examine if and to what extent various factors, including parental, household, environmental, gender, and ethnicity impact Black millennials’ decision to go into the educational field. Participant criteria included being of the African Diaspora population, being born within the years of 1981-1996, and working with students in an official capacity in which they have daily contact. Participants were asked to complete the Family Involvement Questionnaire-High School Version and the Parental Involvement Questionnaire. Logistic regression analysis was employed. While 77 of the 109 participants (71%) indicated a belief that their career choice was influenced by their parents, when analyzed there was not a significant predictor to support this assertion. The intent of this research was to help identify those key factors that can influence Black educators and ultimately, aid in strengthening the teaching population to reflect and influence Black students. Black communities may benefit from the results of this study by acknowledging 70% of respondents were influenced by their families regarding career choice. Continuing to seek motivational factors to support future Black and Brown educators will create positive social change through a more just and equal educational experience for Black and Brown students.