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Date of Award

Fall 12-5-2022

Author Requested Restriction

Open Access (no restriction)

Work Type

Dissertation in Practice

Degree Name

Doctor of Educational Leadership (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Chris Knaus

Second Advisor

Tyson Marsh

Third Advisor

Joe Lott, II


Racially hostile campuses often have significantly different retention rates based on students’ race and ethnicity. Existing literature suggests that a better understanding of the negative impacts of a racially hostile campus climate at public universities can help to improve college outcomes for BIPOC students. BIPOC students may benefit from well-designed systems of support to bolster their retention rates, including a focus on targeting specific populations of students. This study was designed to improve understanding of the impacts of such targeted student supports within a racially hostile campus climate, examining the impact on first year retention rates of BIPOC students at one predominantly white institution in the Pacific Northwest. This dissertation included college records of 2,046 First Year Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) BIPOC students at UW-Seattle from 2016-17. Chi-square goodness-of-fit analyses were conducted to determine whether retention rates in the first year differed across EOP status. Multiple logistic regression test was used to determine the relative influence of the independent variables EOP status, Gender, Frequency meeting with advising, Pell grant eligibility, Husky Promise grant eligibility, GPA, UW-prescribed racial category, and the average number of Instructional Center visits. Results from multiple logistic regression analyses suggested that student ethnicity (being Black, Latinx, and Asian) and GPA explained a significant amount of variance in measures of retention rather than-targeted student support services, (e.g., advising, academic seminars, scholarship). The findings suggest that while targeted student support services have important associations with retention, BIPOC and GPA are the most important predictors of retention. While the larger goal should remain transformation of a racially hostile campus climate, in the meantime, expansion of targeted student support services can dramatically impact retention rates for specific BIPOC students.