Note: This is a student project from a course affiliated with the Ethnography of the University Initiative. EUI supports faculty development of courses in which students conduct original research on their university, and encourages students to think about colleges and universities in relation to their communities and within larger national and global contexts.

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Title:Non-Traditional Minority Students at the University of Illinois and Parkland Community College
Author(s):Zaleski, Rob
Subject(s):Non-traditional student
Higher education
Adult learner
RHET105M5 S08
Abstract:As a non-traditional student myself, I wanted to explore the struggles of other non-traditional students, especially those also falling into minority groups. This paper intends to explore the programs in place at the University of Illinois and Parkland Community College to help non-traditional minority students succeed not only financially, but academically and socially. There are many roadblocks in place for non-traditional minority students in terms of scheduling, child care and a dual feeling of trying to assimilate due to ethnic differences and age differences with peers who may follow a more traditional student status. Also being discussed are some things being done at a political level to increase funding and encourage attendance of non-traditional minority students.
Issue Date:2008
Course / Semester:Rhetoric 105, Principles of Composition, Race & the University, Instr. Kristin McCann: This course entailed continual negotiation of three primary focuses: academic writing, introduction to ethnographic research methodologies, and critical inquiry into issues of race and representation. I approached this course as a semester-long conversation with students, the texts with which we engaged, and the kairos of the physical and ideological spaces in which we were immersed. I encouraged students to draw upon their expertise as current UIUC undergraduates and to consider their stake in the university’s narratives. Students were, of course, not expected to produce a complete ‘ethnography’; rather, to consider what combination of ethnographic research methodologies might be most useful to their specific essays and research projects and what issues they deemed most exigent for their inquiries. Students also had the opportunity to present at the bi-annual EUI conference, alongside other EUI undergraduate and graduate students. The course syllabus is available at:
Publication Status:unpublished
Date Available in IDEALS:2008-06-10

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

  • Student Communities and Culture
    The university offers an extraordinary opportunity to study and document student communities, life, and culture. This collection includes research on the activities, clubs, and durable social networks that comprise sometimes the greater portion of the university experience for students.
  • Diversity on Campus/Equity and Access
    This collection examines ways in which the U.S. university and the American college experience are affected by diversity, and difference. In particular, these student projects examine experiences of diversity on campus, including important contemporary social, cultural, and political debates on equity and access to university resources.
  • University Units and Institutional Transformation
    Projects in this collection explore institutional growth and change as seen in the histories and practices of university units and programs.
  • Technology and Student Life
    This collection appreciates and investigates the meanings and impact of new technologies on students' social lives, learning, and group formation.
  • The University and the Community
    This collection of student research interrogates the relationships between the university and the local community.
  • Student Learning
    This collection examines student learning both in and beyond the classroom.

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