Higher Education and Student Affairs (HESA) Administrators' Experiences with Undocumented Students and Related State Policies

Project Details


The goal of this project is to understand how higher education and student affairs administrators (HESAA) experience, interpret, and act upon varied federal, state, and postsecondary policies. This work will contribute to the field of higher education by exploring the skills, competencies, and knowledge HESAAs use to navigate such complex environments. The purpose of this research is to provide HESAAs with more guidance in their work with undocumented students so that undocumented students may feel more supported in postsecondary environments. The following questions guide this study: How do HESAAs navigate conflicting federal, state, and university politics and practices related to undocumented students? I plan to employ an embedded case study methodology, drawing on a sample of six states whose policy approaches fall into the three categories: inclusive (New Jersey and Minnesota); exclusionary (South Carolina and Alabama); and neutral policies (Pennsylvania and North Carolina). I will conduct in depth semi-structured interviews with HESAAs in each state as well as analyze relevant documents. Data from this research will be of interest to state and higher education policymakers, HESA professionals, and researchers. In particular HESAAs will be interested in understanding their role in possibly contributing or creating barriers to undocumented students' accessing postsecondary benefits.
Effective start/end date1/01/21 → …


  • National Academy of Education


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.