Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Educational Administration and Foundations: College Student Personnel Administration

First Advisor

Beth Hatt


Undocumented and mixed-status students often find themselves resisting in contested spaces at institutions of higher education. This project focused on how nine Latina leaders, whose advocacy spanned a little over a decade, produced identities of resistance at their predominately white college campus. This study captured the testimonios of the former Latina presidents and leaders of an undocumented student organization named DREAM Action NIU. Braiding together figured worlds, undocumented critical race theory and Nepantla this study observed how las mujeres were agitated to action while residing in the figured world of their student organization. Their interactions in this space led to discourse which helped (re)shape their identities or resistance (activists, organizer, or leader) and facilitated their understanding of agency and ultimately led them to exert their activist agency to create change on their campus. The Latina leaders partnered in the completion of this dissertation which used an undocumented paradigm, that recognized the value in honoring the richness of the undocumented community and uplifting the voices and experiences of those being researched as well as giving back the research to those who rightfully own it.

KEYWORDS: activism, cultural identity, higher education, identity formation, mixed-status college students, undocumented immigrants


Imported from LxF3pez_ilstu_0092E_12108.pdf


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