College of Science and Health Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Ida Salusky, PhD

Second Advisor

Antonio Polo, PhD


Underrepresented groups, including ethnic and racial minorities as well as first-generation college students (FGCS), are less likely to attain a four-year college degree than their white counterparts. This is particularly true for Latinx youth that are often the first in their family to go to college. Existing research on the role of parental support in promoting retention among Latinx college students is mixed. The current study used a qualitative, longitudinal method to examine the perceptions of parental support among nine (9) Latinx FGCS attending a medium-sized private university in the Midwest region of the United States. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) was used to analyze data. Analysis revealed that Latinx FGCS 1) receive several forms of support from parents that are broadly categorized as emotional and instrumental; 2) experience variable parental support; 3) provide support to their families; and 4) experienced changes in types of support received after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Findings are of particular importance because of the rapid growth of Latinx within the U.S population.

SLP Collection