Staci H. Zake

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


College of Education, Doctoral Program

First Advisor

Monkman, Karen

Second Advisor

Proweller, Amira

Third Advisor

Julian, Sally


This study examined women’s experiences in a single-sex academic environment to help us better understand broader issues in higher education related to the history of educating women and the role of women’s colleges within the U.S system. This dissertation research moved beyond existing research about elite single-sex schooling to better understand the experiences for graduates of second tier women’s colleges in relation to a women-centered environment. Findings support that female students attending second-tier women’s colleges experience the single-sex environment very similarly to peers attending top tier women’s colleges and can end up in similar places professionally as their peers at top tier women’s colleges.