Theses Doctoral

The Career Development of Latino Immigrant Youth

Bonifacio, Luisa

For many Latino immigrant children the transition from adolescence to adulthood and more specifically from high school to college or the workforce can be a daunting experience. Scholars have identified contextual factors such as family, culture, and access to academic and financial resources contribute significantly to the academic and career decision making of Latino immigrant youths (Chaves et al., 2004). Vocational psychology research literature has been criticized for the exclusion of diverse populations, particularly inner city youth (Medvide & Blustein, 2010) from career development theories. Using consensual qualitative research (CQR), the current study broadens the understanding of the career development of Latino immigrant youth by gathering 15 participant narratives from current NYC high school students. These interviews were audio recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using CQR methods (Hill, Knox, Thompson, Williams, Hess, & Ladany, 2005). The results of the study illustrate how culture, family support, access to financial and academic resources, and perceived barriers impact the career decision-making of Latino immigrant youth. More specifically, results indicate Latino immigrant youth highly value family relationships and teacher support in their career decision-making, and feel these supports are essential for their career success. Additionally, participants’ internalization of their social status and access to financial and academic resources critically influence their career decisions. Recommendations for research and clinical practice were presented with an emphasis on expanding multicultural competency and culturally responsive counseling interventions provided to students and families in order to reinforce students’ academic, social, and cultural strengths.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Thesis Advisors
Gushue, George V.
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
October 14, 2016