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A Human Ecological Narrative: Mexican-American Second- and Third-Generation Voices of Unheard Mothers and their Influence on their Child’s Educational Attainment

  • Author(s): Ruiz-LaBerge, Monica
  • Advisor(s): Prado-Olmos, Particia
  • et al.

Educational attainment is not an even playing field for the fastest-growing minority in the United States: Mexican-Americans and their successive generations. Generational differences in educational attainment among Mexican-American shows limited progress with each successive generation, with the exception being between the first-to second-generation. Research on family environmental factors for the members of the successive immigrant generations in American schools provides relatively insufficient insight on how to prepare to meet the demands of Mexican-American students within the context of their third- or fourth-generational differences. The focus of this study is the examination of Mexican-American second- and third-generation mother’s influence over their child(ren’s) educational attainment. This study uses the conceptual framework of Urie Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory to guide a narrative inquiry into the experiences of Mexican-American second- and third-generation mothers and their children.

Keywords: poverty, resilience, opportunities, education, segregation, race/ethnicity, language, inequities, immigrant youth, generational status, generational differences, Latinos, Mexican, Mexican-Americans

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