Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Higher Education (EdD)

Degree Level



Rehabilitation, Human Resources and Communication Disorders


John W. Murry, Jr.

Committee Member

Ketevan Mamiseishvili

Second Committee Member

Michael T. Miller


College Transition, First-Generation College Students, Parental Involvement


Parental engagement and support have been shown to have a positive impact on the academic performance, mental health, and overall well-being of undergraduate students (Harper et al., 2012). While continuing-generation college students utilize knowledge and insight from their parents to navigate the collegiate experience, first-generation undergraduate students face hurdles that can impact their experience due to the unfamiliarity associated with being the first in their family to pursue higher education. The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine underrepresented first-year, first-generation undergraduate students’ perceptions of their parent(s) involvement when deciding to attend college, high school to college transition, and first-year academic and social experiences. The data for this study was collected from participants in academic enrichment programs at a land-grant, mid-southern research university. Findings from the study indicate that parental involvement could play a significant role in the college experience of first-year, first-generation undergraduate students of color.