Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Educational Administration and Foundations: Educational Administration

First Advisor

Lydia Kyei-Blankson


The purpose of this study was to explore how former National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I (DI) Black female student-athletes experienced their mid-major athletic departments and to better understand how they navigated these anti-Black spaces. BlackCrit theory (Dumas & Ross, 2019; Johnson, 2019), Black Feminist Thought (BFT) (Collins, 2000), and Intersectionality (Crenshaw, 1989; Collins & Bilge, 2016) comprised the theoretical framework used to examine Black female former NCAA DI student-athletes’ lived experiences with athletic departments that lead, cultivate experiences, develop policies, and monitor the safety of student-athletes. Seven Black female former NCAA DI student-athletes who played at mid-major colleges or universities for four consecutive years participated in the study. Data were collected via interviews, and data analysis revealed five emerging themes: Title IX Dynamics, Issues of Race, Lack of Intuitional Support, Perceptions of and Relationships with Athletic Administration, and Anti-blackness. The identification and interpretation of these themes allow for a deeper understanding of what Black female former NCAA DI student-athletes experienced during their collegiate playing careers. Recommendations for practical and leadership levels and directions for future research to continue needed conversations with Black female current and former NCAA DI student-athletes are provided.


Imported from Brown_ilstu_0092E_12254.pdf


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