Living Legacies: A Phenomenological Study of African American Male Educational Leaders at a Historical Black College and University in Texas
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Living Legacies: A Phenomenological Study of African American Male Educational Leaders at a Historical Black College and University in Texas

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Mary Ann Springs, PhD Student in Educational Leadership. Dr. William Allan Kritsonis, Dissertation Chair

Mary Ann Springs, PhD Student in Educational Leadership. Dr. William Allan Kritsonis, Dissertation Chair

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    Living Legacies: A Phenomenological Study of African American Male Educational Leaders at a Historical Black College and University in Texas Living Legacies: A Phenomenological Study of African American Male Educational Leaders at a Historical Black College and University in Texas Presentation Transcript

    • LIVING LEGACIES: A PHENOMENOLOGICAL STUDY
      OF SEVEN AFRICAN AMERICAN MALE
      EDUCATIONAL LEADERS AT A SOUTHWESTERN
      HISTORICALLY BLACK COLLEGE AND UNIVERSITY
      IN TEXAS
      A Dissertation Defense
      By
      Mary Ann Springs
       
      Dissertation Chair: Dr. William Allan Kritsonis
    • Dr. William Allan Kritsonis(Dissertation Chair)
      Dr. Douglas S. Hermond
      (Member)
      Dr. Patricia Hoffman-Miller
      (Member)
       
      Dr. Carl Gardiner
      (Member)
       
      Dr. Solomon Osho
      (Outside Member)
    • Introduction
      African American male leadership is crucial to the African American community because of the rise of Black-on-Black crime, poor academic performance, the overrepresentation of Black males in special education, and disproportionate numbers of African American male incarceration in comparison to other races (Child’s Aid Society, 2006; Ladson-Billings (1999).
      • Without proper guidance programs and the necessary mentors and coaches to help young African American males, this group may lack the resilience to work hard and become productive citizens that will carry the legacy of African American male leadership (Child’s Aid Society, 2006).
      • The consistent decline of African American male participation and contribution to the African American community could lead to the absence of future leaders of HBCUs and public schools in general (Jackson, 2001; Wiley, 2001; Woodson, 1933/2005).
      • Despite these social, political, and cultural barriers that impede African American males, many do succeed. In fact, African American male educational leaders at HBCUs are successful and have a significant influence on African American male students through mentorship (Lucas, 2010).
      • The literature tells us little about the impact and influence of such men; therefore, the researcher conducted a study that would describe the impact of Critical Race Theory (CRT), what made the subjects of the study resilient in overcoming societal barriers, and the significance of mentorship on their journey toward educational leadership.
      • The researcher was approved to conduct a phenomenological study devoted to examining the emergence of African American male educational leadership as perceived, experienced, and exercised by African American male administrators of an HBCU in Southwest Texas.
    • Research Questions
      Research Questions
      The following research questions guided the study. According to Marshall and Rossman, as cited in Creswell (2007), the central question of a phenomenological study should be explanatory in nature when little is known about a particular phenomenon and descriptive when describing patterns related to the phenomenon.
    • Research Question #1
      What was the evolution of leadership over the past three decades of seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • Research Question #2
      What critical moments in history have impacted the educational leadership style(s)
      of seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • ResearchQuestion #3
      Which leaders from the past have left an impression on seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • Research Question #4
      In the face of social, political, or racial adversities, what influenced the decisions of seven African American male educational leaders at a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • Research Question #5
      What is the essence of the leadership of seven African American male educational leaders at a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • Research Question #6
      How has the leadership of seven African American male educational leaders influenced students, policy, the development of programs, strategies, and curriculum at a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • Purpose of the Study
      • The purpose of this study was to conduct a phenomenological investigation that gave voice to seven African American male educational leaders at a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in Southwest Texas.
    • Significance of the Study
      • This study may serve as a tool to restore what "excellence in action" looked like in the form of phenomenology, the re-creation of lived experiences.
    • The desired outcome was four-fold:
      1. To foster the meaningful paternal relationships from senior
      educational leaders to succeeding generations;
      2. To teach and share leadership characteristics with young
      male youth of all backgrounds;
      3. To encourage African American males to graduate; and
      4.To inspire and motivate African American males aspiring
      leadership positions in public and higher education.
    • Personal Statement
      • According to Moustakas, as cited by Creswell (2007), “the first step toward "phenomenological reduction" in the analysis of the data is for the researcher to set aside all preconceived ideas or experiences in order to best understand the experiences of the participants” (p. 235).
    • Delimitations of the Study
      • This study looked at seven African American male administrators, therefore eliminating the experiences and contributions of African American female administrators. The participants of the study have all served as educational leaders at a Southwestern HBCU.
    • Limitations
      First,participant's narrative expressions may be limited to the researcher's ability to use strong and descriptive language in order to accurately report the experience.
    • Second,since the study and experiences are specific to the participants in question, the reproduction of this study for a larger population with different demographic and racial make-up could change the outcome.
    • Third,since participants shared experiences from the past, their expressions may be limited to their capacity to recollect information.
    • Fourth,the study depended upon the honest responses of the participants while sharing their experiences.
    • Fifth,since the seven participants are actively serving as leaders or as teachers, their availability was limited when scheduling interviews.
    • Sixth,the demographic survey asked for occupational information that could potentially reveal the participants identity. The participants were given the liberty to answer or not answer any portion of the questionnaire.
    • Literature Review
      • In order to understand the phenomenon of African American male leadership, it is important to understand their history as a people. The aftermath of slavery, racism, and inequality has left a negative impact on the plight of African American males at the educational, social, and political levels (Woodson, 1933/2005).
      • It is important to note that these risk factors have significantly decreased the pool of African American males as future leaders in society (Eatman, 2000; Green, 2001; Wiley, 2001).
      • The literature review began with the history of Black education in the South, the rise and significance of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU), and the establishment of African American male leaders at the national level.
      • Leadership styles of African American men were examined in addition to their barriers in higher education.
      • The review also revealed the significance of mentorship, Critical Race, and Resiliency Theories. The literature review concluded by identifying risk factors that potentially threaten African American males.
    • In general, the following were examined relative to the literature review:
      History of Black Education in the South
      Critical Moments in African American History
      Black Leaders and Politics
      The Jim Crow Laws and Segregation
      The Black Power and Civil Rights Movements
      The Black Family and Community
      The Rise of African American Leadership and National Leaders
      Leadership Styles of African American Men
      Frederick Douglas
    • Henry Highland Garnet
      Marcus Garvey
      William Edward Burghardt DuBois
      Malcom X
      Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
      Educational Leaders of African American HBCUs
      Black Faculty in Higher Education
      African American Male Administrators in Higher Education
      A Brief History of HBCU Educational Leaders
      Leadership Demands
    • The Significance of Mentorship for African American Males
      Critical Race Theory
      Resiliency Theory
      Risk Factors that Threaten African American Male Youth
    • Methodology
      1. Chapter three described the methodology for this study by defining the research design, participant selection and description, data collection method, and analysis.
      2. The researcher described the qualitative methodology used for the study and gave the rationale for the methodological selection. The research design and the role of the researcher were also detailed.
      3. Data collection included interviews, demographic information, artifacts, and vitas.
    • Subjects of the Study
      Seven participants were selected based upon criterion sampling.
      The following criteria were used to determine the participants for the study: African American male, educational leaders or teachers who became leaders at a Southwestern HBCU in Texas, served the university for 30 or more years, and currently serves as an educational leader at the same Southwestern HBCU. Successful African American male leaders would include the attainment of a doctoral degree and stabilization of employment.
    • Instrumentation
      1. The study required the use of four forms of data: demographic information, interview questions, artifact observations, and vitas.
      2. The demographic instrument included familial, educational, and occupational information.
    • 3. The researcher scheduled three face-to-face in-depth interview sessions with each participant comprised of open-ended and semi-structured interview questions.
      4.The same questions were asked of each participant, and when necessary, a follow-up question for clarification to a previous response.
    • 5. Interview questions were experience or behavioral in nature.
      6.Each interview session was audio taped with the participant's consent. The audio tapes were later transcribed by the researcher.
    • 7. The observations included artifacts such as photos, letters of excellence in leadership from supervisors, peers, and former students, plaques, awards/programs honoring the participants, and public documents were video-taped at the participants’ office or home.
      8.In addition, each participant was asked to provide an updated vita.
    • Data Analysis
      • Table 1 includes the six research questions that guided the study and the data collection instruments. The letters "IQ" represent each interview question as they align with each research question.
      • An X represents data used for triangulation. The research questions were answered in the following manner:
    • Table 1 Data Collection
      __________________________________________________________
      Question No. Interview Instrument Observations of Artifacts Vita
      __________________________________________________________
      Research Question 1 IQ 1 X X
      Research Question 2 IQ 2
      Research Question 3 IQ 4
      Research Question 4 IQ 3
      Research Question 5 IQ 7 & 8
      Research Question 6 IQ5& 6X x
      _________________________________________________________
      Note. Research questions will be answered by the interview instrument (IQ). The X represents data that will be used for triangulation. Demographic information will be used for triangulation as well.
      • The analysis of the data was guided by Critical Race/Resiliency Theories, and mentorship. The process began by bracketing or suspending the researcher's personal bias concerning leadership.
      • The researcher read and horizontalized the transcribed interview responses and observations by describing how the participants had experienced leadership.
      • The researcher also allowed the participants to review their responses and make revisions, omit, or add additional comments.
      • Once the data was analyzed, the results were reported through a combination of narration, tables, and figures.
    • Data Analysis
      • Chapter four contained the narration of the historical, social, and reflective aspects of leadership among seven African American male educational leaders and how they overcame barriers in the attainment of their career goals.
      • An individual file was created for each participant with the letter A representing participant 1, letter B for participant 2, letter C for participant 3, letter D for participant 4, letter E for participant 5, letter F for participant 6, and letter G for participant 7. A similar file was created for the participants’ observations of artifacts.
    • Narrative Responses: IQ and RQ
      1. When and how did your journey toward leadership begin?
      2. Throughout your life, what social, educational, or political risk factors did you experience as potential road-blocks in the pursuit of your career goals and how did you overcome them?
      3. What do you contribute to most of your ability to overcome barriers throughout your career as an educational leader?
      4. During your life as a young man, who were the leaders that inspired you, what qualities did they possess and how did these qualities influence your leadership?
    • 5. How do you think African American male educational leadership adds value to the mainstream of society?
      6. Provide examples of how your legacy has impacted the lives of students/former students by implementation of leadership programs, strategies, curriculum, and theories targeted toward African American males.
      7. Describe policies, political office, or positions of power that assisted seven educational leaders in becoming change agents of local, state, or national policy.
      8. Describe what it means to be an African American male in a leadership position that helped pave the way for African American males.
      9. What keeps seven African American male educational leaders continuing their life of service?
    • Research Question #1
      What was the evolution of leadership over the past three decades of seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
      • Participant A
      I believe my journey toward leadership actually started when I was probably in elementary school. I think some of my teachers recognized that I had a gift for teaching. I was actually, I guess, a kind of peer tutor. I didn't know what I was doing back then in those days; I was just doing what I was asked to do. When I think about it though, that's how they utilized the gift that I had to support other students. I think that was when my journey toward leadership began.
      • Participant B
      I suppose it began when I started participating as an athlete in school. It was in elementary school…physical education, when I started playing sports.I found that my teammates asked me to do certain things, or be in charge of certain things. They would say such things as, “Let me be on your team.” I guess you would call that the quality of a leader…when others want to be with you. That was when I first started noticing myself.
    • g
      • Participant C
      I would say that my leadership journey began in high school. When I was growing up in the rural, segregated South, I participated in a program which was called the “New Farmers of America” (NFA). As part of that we, went through leadership training. We were taught leadership skills and given opportunities to participate in leadership.
      • Participant D
      Most of my interaction was with family, and I think leadership kind of started from this interaction. My great-grandfather was instrumental in my pursuit of education because he developed one of the first Black schools in Waller County.
      • Participant E
      Unfortunately, my mother died when I was eight years old, so my aunt, who was my father’s sister, came to live with us. She was a teacher, and she really inspired me to be a teacher without a direct influence.
      Apparently, somebody recognized leadership skills within me and felt that I could make a contribution. I seized upon the opportunity to serve, and whatever I participated in, I always gave it my best.
      • Participant F
      Well, I think I was born a leader really. I always wanted to do the best at whatever I set my mind to accomplish; it was just a natural thing. My parents didn’t have to make me do anything because I was self-motivated.
      • Participant G
      My journey toward leadership began in college when I was exposed to one person in particular, a coach. As a young boy, the coach would allow me to watch the team practice. I had a great amount of respect for him and the way he led that team.
    • Research Question #2
      What critical moments in history have impacted the educational leadership style(s)
      of seven African American male educational leadersfrom a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
      • Participant A
      Growing up, I can recall the separate water fountains. I can recall having to ride in the back of the bus. We always had to make sure we carried food. When we were on trips, we couldn't always and didn't know if there would be places to stop.
    • There was nothing to compare it to because you didn't know any other way of life. During Integration, I couldn't understand why the Black administrators, the counselors, and the senior English teachers at the high school, were given positions of lesser authority and prestige. These experiences caused me to take risks in fighting for what I thought was right; even today, as a leader, I take risks, but they are calculated risks.
      • Participant B
      Well, the Jim Crow Law itself was an unconstitutional law that said certain things about a human, and I grew up with that law. That law said that you were not equal to other people, but it afforded an opportunity for you to develop your potential. The Civil Rights movement afforded many Black males an opportunity to participate in manhood…to participate in standing for something that they felt was just and right.
      • Participant C
      Well, communities were segregated. We had Black leadership in the Black community. We had Black neighborhoods and Black businesses, even in the small towns. You could easily identify leadership because it started with the churches. The churches were always a powerful force in the community. Those individuals were the outgoing people, the people with resources. So they were looked up to as leaders in the Black community. But opportunities were still limited. So, this caused me to alter my goals to pursue education and attain my advanced degrees.
      • Participant D
      During my formative years, racism was prevalent, but I was never exposed to it. Even though we heard about the racial turmoil of the nation, we were sheltered within our communities and them in theirs. We just accepted it as a way of life.If there’s something blocking my path, I believed that I could still get there some kind of way. One has to work around the obstacles in order to reach their destination. I never recognized the challenges of racism.
      • Participant E
      In the era in which I grew- up, if you were aspiring to be a leader, you were aspiring to be a leader in the context of a Jim Crow and not a world situation.The Jim Crow Era afforded opportunities for male role models as teachers since career options were limited.
      I think that the integration we fought for as a race hurt us, as White public schools took the best Black teachers and placed them where predominately White students were taught. Before these moments in my life, I believed in participatory democracy.I did not see any major obstacle that kept me from getting to the point I wanted to be.
      • Participant F
      One of the things I felt was awesome during segregation was that we had the HBCUs. As a result of the Civil Rights Movement, the doors opened and gave us an opportunity to prove our capability of handling situations that faced us.The negative part of the movement was that some people probably would not have put us in positions we had the capacity to fulfill.
      • Participant G
      Growing up in the Black community gave us such a strong foundation. Having strong mentors and role models that demonstrated excellence in their field was a source of inspiration for me. The Civil Rights Movement had a great impact.
      It allowed African American males to demonstrate their leadership. Dr. King used his logic and reasoning in understanding how to move the African American community toward equality. These events have not changed my leadership philosophy; so, if you ask me today what my leadership style is; I'd say my leadership style is open and transparent.
    • Research Question #3
      Which leaders from the past have left an impression on seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
      • Participant A
      There were the principals of the school that inspired me, and certainly my father and mother. My mentors were my ministers, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Presidents Kennedy, Eisenhower, and, later, Ronald Reagan, and even international leaders. So, I think that the people that inspired me were people who provided leadership in such a way that got the job done.
      • Participant B
      There is a laundry list of males who inspired me. There were coaches, physical education teachers, principals, spiritual leaders, gentlemen in the community, presidents of my university, and presidents who were my fraternity brothers. Those were the kinds of people that I gravitated to. For me, it goes back to the people who were your mentors and those you respected and wanted to be like. If I were to describe them…they all had integrity and self-discipline; their demeanor seemed to be so fair and just.
      • Participant C
      My father brought us up fearing God, and he taught us to work for what we wanted. I was inspired in college when I started to learn about Martin Luther King Jr., Ralph Abernathy, Julian Bond, Andy Young, and some of the mega-church leaders.The thing that I saw were good, righteous, upstanding men, who had family values, and were educated. That’s what I wanted to be. And, I remember watching Martin Luther King Jr.. He was willing to sacrifice everything to help bring others along.
      • Participant D
      While growing up in the country, I was exposed to Sam Tucker, a Black cowboy. At a young age, I would have liked to have patterned my life after his. He was a strong Black man, who would tell stories of how he grew up. He was just a strong person. His demeanor was so calm...he was just outstanding. He took responsibility for his wife, worked at the ranch, and took care of his people. As a foreman, he made sure everyone worked together well at the ranch. He was hard-working. His style was not authoritative, and you never heard him holler at anyone; he would just go to work.
      • Participant E
      I, undoubtedly, attribute my ascension into administration to the president of the University at the time. I had no aspirations to be an administrator, but I rose to the occasion when my talents and abilities were needed. He had well-organized and well-defined goals. Once a task was started, it had to be finished. Dr. Thomas emphasized these virtues.
      • Participant F
      Well, my inspiration to be a leader came from my dad. He was the embodiment of a champion. I had role models during high school and college that had a great impact on me. While attending the university as a student, I had three Black professors who became my mentors. I had an outstanding example of leadership from the president of the university at the time. They were caring and you could touch them because they were approachable. They were all about the students.
      • Participant G
      Dr. Patterson was one of the leaders that I really admired. Patterson then went on to become the president of Hampton University, and he helped organized the Negro College Fund. One of my professors of biology at the University was another mentor. The president was good at bringing quality leaders to the University. I was so impressed with the administrators and teachers at the University. Their educational level was second to none. So, I was exposed to many great teachers and leaders who inspired me to become an educator. They just had the winning philosophy.
    • Research Question #4
      In the face of social, political, or racial adversities, what influenced the decisions of seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
      • Participant A
      Whenever something comes up, I still kind of weigh the risks involved. There are certain things you do, whether the risk is high or low, because it's something you have to do. Over the years, I have developed an eclectic style of leadership. I try to reach consensus; now that doesn’t always work.
      I also recognize that barriers are often self-imposed. I guess I don't see a lot of barriers.It may be a slight detour that may have caused me to slow down in pursuing something, but it was not a barrier.
      • Participant B
      There may be a term called demands, but I don't see them as barriers; I see them as demands to be successful. And, if you wish to be successful in this arena, these are the demands you have to meet. For example: If you learn what is correct, even though the law said I'm not privileged to mix with you, I'm not denied the opportunity to know what you know because leadership qualities and skills are not owned by anybody. My leadership style is one of respect for the individuals in which I interact.
      • Participant C
      I would say my faith in God… I don't talk about it a lot, but that's been the big stabilizer for me. Going through many challenges, I could always know that going back to Biblical scripture and reading my favorites would give me comfort in knowing that in the end, I'm going to be okay. When I saw the direction, the impact that segregation, now desegregation, was having, it made me change my thinking.These jobs are not going to be there for me in the future. So, I thought maybe I should set my sights on the college level. Over the years, I’ve learned that you get more done through democratic leadership.
      • Participant D
      It’s hard to answer why those experiences didn’t stop me… I guess it’s like going from here to that building outside. I can walk straight, or I can go around to get to the building. If there’s something blocking my path, I believed that I could still get there some kind of way. Racism was one of those factors. One has to work around the obstacles in order to reach their destination. I never recognized the challenges of racism; I knew I would reach my goals one way or another.
      • Participant E
      One has to keep a positive frame of mind. I have never been a negative person. I speak positively and look on the bright side of things. If you have confidence in your ability, then you will work toward accomplishing your goals. When I was in college, I went to Black schools and White students went to White schools. I finished college in the 1950’s and went to graduate school, but I did not find this arrangement to be a handicap; I discovered that it was a strength. I believe in participatory democracy.
      • Participant F
      My dedication to education has helped students to understand that they can't get anywhere without working hard and to be the best that they can be. I teach those ideas, and demonstrate to them what it takes to be a great thinker.I teach them to have a positive attitude, and that if anybody else could do it, they could, too. We don't have that kind of enrichment of Black professors anymore.It's scary that nobody cares about our young Black males. I put blood, sweat and tears into my students…I work night and day trying to help them.
      • Participant G
      Having knowledge and being educated were factors that helped me to overcome challenges, in addition to having strong mentors and role models that demonstrated excellence in their field. So, yes, there were laws, and we knew those laws; but we were intelligent enough to abide by them, and not allow the laws to subjugate us to inferiority. These events did not alter my leadership style…I’ve always believed in transparency and consensus among the group.
    • Research Question #5
      What is the essence of the leadership of seven African American male educational leaders from a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
      • Participant A
      I see it as a big responsibility being in a position to encourage younger Black males to do the best they can.I'm trying to make sure that younger Black males have many experiences to lead and take advantage of opportunities that come up. I just worry when I see Black males that are being placed in positions where they may not have that same kind of encouragement, which is why I take mentoring very seriously.
    • 3
      • Participant B
      For me…if I were to sum it up… if I can help somebody, let me do that. When a male sees me, I'd like for him to see and desire to use many of those strategies that he sees within me. We have to set examples as leaders to inspire them to emulate the qualities of a leader; therefore, we must lead correctly. There are many people who are leaders, but their behavior is unacceptable. Therefore, African American males who are looking at those types of leaders need to be careful of what they choose.
      • Participant C
      In my graduate school days, we talked about how we were treated different and were held to different expectations. But at the same time, we had a responsibility to stand strong. What I mean was that there has always been a double or triple standard. Standards are not the same if you're a Black man. So, I learned that it's not really the position that you're in that matters; it's what you do with the one you have.The example I tried to set was to do all I could to the best of my ability wherever I went.
      • Participant D
      Serving as an African American educational leader means having the ability to impact the lives of people. The heart of my leadership has been the power to “impact”. If you look at a medical doctor, while he may be the one who is making the impact, he can only touch one person at a time.
      But, as an educator, you have the potential to reach twenty, thirty, forty, or perhaps a hundred people at one time. So, impacting the lives of people... that is the key. That is what educational leadership means to me.
      • Participant E
      I think we are here to make a contribution. You have to make some type of impact on society. And if you are going to do it, you give your best to the people with whom you are interacting.
      The students are our clientele. If you made any impact, then you should certainly inspire the student to pursue the profession to which they aspire.
      • Participant F
      It feels great. It's a joy. It's outstanding, considering the impact that I've had on young peopleat the University and beyond. The reputation of my teaching style has encouraged students to come to my alma mata seeking my instruction.
      The journey has been great, and as I sit back and reflect, I know I didn't cheat my students. They were successful all across the country because they had the background knowledge. I thank God for that, and it has been a blessing to have influenced the lives of my students.
      • Participant G
      “I think it was an accomplishment.”
    • Research Question #6
      How has the leadership of seven African American male educational leaders influenced students, policy, the development of programs, strategies, and curriculum at a Southwestern HBCU in Texas?
      • Participant A
      For society, in general, I think the African American population brings the ability to solve problems that may come from a different perspective. How did we survive during the Jim Crow era?
      How did we survive when people thought we were less than human?I think just that “survival instinct” is something we can bring to the table.
      • Participant B
      Serving as a role model is important.There is a disconnect in what I think the young Black males today, based upon the period in time in which they are growing up, have tried to redefine some basic things like respect, integrity, and honesty.
      • Participant C
      Well, even now, we’ve made a lot of progress, but there’s still a lot of work to be done with this whole issue of race. As African Americans, we were taught to get an education, but that was still not enough...opportunities still won’t be equal.
      So, you basically have to out work your competition, and be twice as good; you have to understand that going in. You can get through some of that, but you've got to be willing to work extra hard to overcome inequality.
      • Participant D
      The truth is “uncompromising” discipline…That’s probably the best description of what African American male leaders offer. In my opinion, this quality kind of sums up what President Obama represents: truthful, uncompromising discipline, which indicates that he knows what needs to be done. The President has people challenging him in many different ways, yet he demonstrates the strong ability to listen to them.Even as President of the United States of America, Barack Obama is still denied the respect he deserves.
      • Participant E
      First of all, there is a great need for the representation of role models among all ethnic groups. I believe that seeing various ethnic groups in leadership roles provide hope and the possibility of being successful in life.
      If young adults have never witnessed someone from their ethnic background in certain positions of authority, then their aspirations could be limited. For example: witnessing Barack Obama as the President of the United States of America was a historical event for African Americans.
      • Participant F
      When people of other groups recognize our accomplishments as African-Americans, they are amazed. Schools don't teach Black history to White students, Asians, or whomever, so they don't know that Black people have made significant contributions to society.
      President Obama has made an impact now, but the struggle to overcome had already been established by Dr. King and others in what they had done for society.
      • Participant G
      The first thing that educational leaders must understand is that they're not bosses; they’re leaders. Leaders command they don't demand.As a leader, you have to clearly understand and become familiar with the people that you're working with and serving.
    • Research Question #6 (cont.)
      How has the leadership of seven African American male educational leaders influenced students, policy, the development of programs, strategies, and curriculumfrom a Southwestern Historically Black College and University?
    • (part two-policy/programs, etc)
      • Participant A
      Well, I’ll give one example: the Capital Campaign…. We raised $33 million when the economy was down. I was on the Faculty Advisory Committee at the district level. I’ve written and continue to write policies for the University.
      • Participant B
      In my case, individuals are privileged to write an acknowledgment in their research papers in my class. I have just hundreds of acknowledgments that express their appreciation for helping them to conduct research correctly.
      For the 55 years that I've been here, I've been able to lead in some of the highest levels of leadership because of the reputation that I have developed in high school and by men who served as my mentors. I've been privileged to have a reputation of someone that knows how to get a job done as it relates to leadership. When you look at my legacy, when you look at my background, people voted me into those positions.
      • Participant C
      I'm proud that I was responsible for a program that started back in 1982, the Research Apprentice Program (RAP). We exposed the students to role models and mentors, field trips, industries, and other places; A lot of PhDs, MDs and JDs have come through the program and are very successful.
      Probably one of the highest positions that I've served was chair of the Experimental Station Committee on Policy back in 2005-2006. We had a lot to do with the formation of the 2008 Farm Bill, in which we set policies and programs that impacted agriculture; I was an integral part of writing that bill.
      • Participant D
      Well, some of my former students have went on to obtain their Ph Ds . I guess over eighteen years, I can say that I helped in the development of the electrical engineering curriculum and pushed for the establishment of seven engineering labs; When I was serving as the interim dean, I presented the administration with the Masters in Electrical Engineering with the possibility of designing a PhD program in a few years. So, I introduced the concept and the information on how to get the programs started.
       
      • Participant E
      In fifty-eight years I have touched a lot of students. I imagine, at that time, I am sure there are at least 400 or 500 physicians that I have taught, and it is something to be proud of. At one time, every student that went to medical school had to take my class. As the department head, I was involved in curriculum changes in biology, which included the input of faculty members.
      • Participant F
      Just about all of the students in engineering were influenced by me because they were required to take my class. This number also included high schools across the state of Texas and other schools in the nation. As a faculty, we have been able to write proposals and get grants for millions of dollars to sponsor programs that benefited the students.
      • Participant G
      I have a list of students who have graduated and gone to medical school from 2000-2011, and it reads as follows:the University of Texas Medical Branch, Tulane University, Baylor College of Medicine, Boston University College of Medicine, Brown University Program of Medicine, Howard University, Indiana University, John Hopkins School of Medicine, Meharry Medical College, Michigan State University of Medicine, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine,
    • Ohio University, Oklahoma State School of Osteopathic Medicine, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Russia Medical, Temple University, Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University,
    • The University of California, University of Cincinnati School of Medicine, and the University of Florida College of Medicine.
    • Findings, Implications, and Recommendations
      • The analysis yielded six common themes that were identified as protective factors to the success of the seven participants of the study:
      a. Recognition of and opportunities for leadership;
      b.Recognition of the positive and negative impact of segregation and integration;
    • c.Community, family, and national leaders as mentors;
      d. Negative risk factors were not acknowledged as roadblocks;
      e.African American males impact and continued service to youth;
      f.Influence inside and outside of the school community.
    • Common Themes
      Recognition and Opportunities for Leadership
      • The evolution of the leadership for the majority of the participants seemed
      to have originated during their formative years, some as early as elementary school.
      All seven participants pointed out that individuals such as teachers, peers , family and
      administrators were significant to their leadership development.
      The recognition of their talents and leadership qualities allowed the appointment or
      election into leadership positions.
      • It was during segregation in Black schools that
      each participant was given the opportunity to recognize experiences
      and exercise their leadership ability.
      Benson, 2010; Berry, 2008; and Bacon, 2002 were studies that also found that African
      American male educational leaders were critical to the development , nurturing, and
      empowerment of students.
      • The participants pursued education as a career path by influence or limited job opportunities. During their tenure at the University, as young men, they were given the opportunity to fill leadership positions at an HBCU.
      • Some took on the responsibilities and title of a specific position yet did not receive the pay.
    • B. Recognized Negative and Positive Impacts of Segregation and Integration
      • All seven participants agreed that the Jim Crow era had accomplished its
      mission of establishing a culture of inequality and separatism that
      eventually became the norm.
      • All seven participants also agreed that segregation and the laws became
      a protective factor by providing African American males the opportunity
      to exercise their leadership and manhood by solving political and social
      problems that the nation's leaders would not address. Gritter (2010) found
      that while participants were subject to the laws at the time, Black southerners
      used their knowledge and intellect to advance the education of their people.
      • Although the aftermath of discrimination and inequality were experienced throughout their lives, the seven participants did not view such critical moments in history for African Americans as risk factors or barriers to their success. Jordan-Taylor (2010) examine the resiliency of nine southern educators in overcoming inequality and returning to the South to provide better educational experiences for African American students.
      • Five out of the seven participants agreed the struggles that they had to endure did not affect their philosophy of leadership because it had already been established through their list of mentors and role models.
      • Two out of the seven participants noted that during the early stages of their leadership, they were autocratic in their approach but later developed a more democratic and eclectic approach.
      • The issues that were presented during their lived experiences were viewed as challenges that could be defeated through faith and belief that they could overcome, financial independence, knowledge, taking risks for the sake of the cause, and access to dynamic role-models that understood the mission of cultivating a strong African American nation.
    • Community, Family, and National Leaders as Mentors
      • The seven participants stated their mentors and role models were a kaleidoscope of local and national leaders at the familial, community, educational, spiritual and national levels. Frazier (2009) found that family, community, and national leaders were critical to the recognition, selection, and development of African American leadership.
      • All seven participants, identified teachers and educational administrators as mentors and role models. The participants expressed how their mentors led by example by way of integrity, discipline, teamwork, goal orientation, perseverance, education, and compassion (Scott, 2011).
      • The lives of these men and women were so compelling that the seven participants were inspired to imitate the qualities and characteristics they saw exercised by their mentors and role models, which became the foundation and later, the bedrock of their leadership (Jackson, 2008).
      • The seven participants attributed their career success in the field of education to parents or family members, teachers, administrators, and national leaders during pivotal moments in Black history.
      • According to the participants of the researcher’s study, African American communities were powerful and developed outstanding educational values when they embraced the same ideals as a collective group (DuBois, 1903/2003; Woodson, 1933/2005).
      • One participant felt strongly that the Black community lost its sense of direction when African American national leaders were assassinated. Because no alternative leader was in place after the assination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the African American community lacked a sense of direction.
      • Another participant concluded that after African Americans gained a degree of rights and equality, though not complete, the struggle to fight for a just cause diminished. He believed this slowed the momentum of continuing to gain knowledge, exercising and demanding excellence from oneself and the value of community and church.
      • All seven participants are actively engaged in mentoring African American male youth. The impact and results of their mentoring has not been quantified.
      • The study revealed that mentoring was a strong predictor of success for African American males.
    • D. Negative Risk Factors Not Acknowledged as Roadblocks
      • As it pertains to social, political, and racial barriers that had the potential to serve as a roadblock to the participants success, five out of the seven participants did not recognize barriers as a force to circumvent their career goals. Each viewed barriers as opportunities to exercise their faith, acquire knowledge to meet the demands of unjust laws, develop a positive attitude, and develop strong work ethics (Daniel, 2006; Adell, 2004; Kennedy, 2008).
      • Four participants mentioned their faith in God as a protective factor in overcoming barriers to success. Overall, the participants of the study had access to an array of positive role models and strong family connections.
    • African American Males Continued Service to Impact Youth
      • The commonality among the seven participants' responses was the importance of having the opportunity to influence the lives of students (Barker, 2009).
      • The participants attributed their resiliency, to role modeling for assurance of core values, education, double standard work ethics, uncompromising discipline, and effective people skills. Possessing the ability to overcome barriers from a different cultural perspective enabled Participant A to bounce back from the impact of unjust laws.
      • Walker (2007) exploration of 12 African American male leaders utilized their social and academic knowledge to enhance their leadership skills in actively serving their institutions, which served as a buffer against negative stereotyping.
      • Participants B, C, and D felt that serving as role models could guide and preserve values that define manhood. Participant F postulated that the absence of African American history in mainstream schools have robbed society of the rich contributions and intellect of African Americans.
      • The participants who no longer serve in an administrative role are back in the classroom reported having more satisfaction and an even greater potential to touch the lives of students who need to see examples of successful African-American male leaders.
    • F. Influence Inside and Outside of the School Community
      • Over 30 years of experience in the area of the endowments and grant proposals were represented by four out of the seven participants such as the “Capital Campaign”, agriculture, math/science, and biology grant proposals.
      • These funds provide scholarships for students and fund programs and research projects. All seven participants either developed policy or curriculum at the university, state, or national levels. Lucas (2010) and Howard (2007) revealed that service/partnerships in and outside the school community supports student growth and the value of civic engagement.
      • All seven participants expressed
      their fulfillment in serving as mentors/
      role models to their students. The
      medical profession/schools across the nation
      have accepted myriads of students because
      of the reputation established by two of
      the participants.
      • The same is true of the engineering program. One of the seven participants of the study had the opportunity to impact his son who now serves society as a medical doctor. Six out of the seven participants had former students who started in their program and have earned degrees at the Master’s and PhD level.
      • While only a few participants of the researchers study have had an impact on society at the state, national, and international levels, all seven of the participants agreed that influencing, serving, and shaping the lives of students was their primary goal and the reason they looked forward to coming to work every day.
    • HBCUs Helped Prepare Students for Success
      • According to the participants, HBCUs were havens during segregation because they provided examples of great educational role models and exposed African Americans to what was taking place in mainstream society.
      • Many participants were not privileged to have their college tuition paid for, so they had to work and save the money or join the service. This concept goes back to the idea that nothing in life is free. True success means putting forth a significant amount of effort and mental discipline.
      • Their goals were crystallized as well. They knew they wanted to pursue education but did not realize they would end up as educational leaders at an HBCU. All seven participants have held (and some continue to hold) an administrative position. Most of the participants are back in the classrooms as instructors/administrators.
    • Injustice Gave Birth to the Demand to be Successful
      • Five out of the seven participants did not recognize barriers as a force to circumvent their career goals but as opportunities to exercise their faith, acquire their knowledge to meet the demands of unjust laws, maintain a positive attitude, and develop strong work ethics.
    • Faith in God, Education and Role Models
      • At the high school and collegiate level, and the beginning of administration, participants had successful male role models who believed, advised, and interacted with them. Some African American national and state leaders had an indirect impact that helped frame some of the participants’ journey toward leadership.
      • Having a solid family structure was a positive factor to the success of the participants.
      • Another factor was having a father that led by example by way of teaching hard work ethics, commitment to completing a task, supporting and providing for the family, modeling excellence, and maintaining their integrity through the times of social, political, and educational challenges.
    • Summary Conclusions/ Impact on Researcher
      • The participant’s resiliency speaks to subsequent generations that life is about accessing proper guidance and making right choices. The lives of these men also taught that life comes with its set of challenges and set-backs, but through faith, dedication, and hard work, one can “bounce- back” and overcome barriers to success.
      • The participant’s example of integrity, dedication, and commitment to excellence has become instrumental in the lives of those whom they have served and continue to serve.
      • The results of the study indicates these seven leaders to be strong, bold, confident, and a gentle composition of the human race…living legacies…the essence of leadership.
    • Implications for Further Practice
      Opportunities to Demonstrate Leadership
      • Just as these powerful men were given opportunities to demonstrate leadership at the primary, secondary, and collegiate levels, school officials should focus on building critical pedagogical competence. Relationship building and getting to know the strengths of their African American male population can create opportunities to exercise their talents.
    • Recommendations for Further Study
      1. A study could be conducted on African American male educational leaders who have served 30+ years at a Predominantly White Institutions (PWI) in higher education.
      2. A study could be conducted on African American male educational leaders’ who have served 30+ years at private institutions in higher education.
    • 3. A study could be conducted on African American male educational leadership and influence at community colleges.
      4.A study could be conducted on the students perceptions of African American male educational leaders at an HBCU.
    • 5.A study could be conducted on African American
      male students’ perception of African American
      male educational leaders as mentors and role
      models.
      6.A study could be conducted on the contributions and influences of African American female educational leaders who have served 30+ years at an HBCU.
    • 7.A study could be conducted on the
      contributions and influence of African
      American female educational leaders at a
      PWI.
      8.A study could be conducted on African American female educational leaders and their role as mentors and role models for African American female students at an HBCU.
    • 9.A study could be conducted on African American female educational leaders and their role as mentors and role models for African American female students at a PWI.
      10. A study could be conducted on the African American female students and their perceptions of African American female educational leaders as mentors and role models.
    • 11. A study could be conducted on minority students’ perceptions of African American male educational leaders as mentors and role models at an HBCU.
    • Thank You