Underrepresented Minority Students’ Experiences at Baylor College of Dentistry: Perceptions of Cultural Climate and Reasons for Choosing to Attend
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A study was conducted at Texas A&M University Baylor College of Dentistry (TAMBCD) in fall 2011 to identify the reasons underrepresented minority (URM) students chose to attend TAMBCD, the factors that supported their success as enrolled students, and their perceptions of the institution's cultural climate. A survey distributed online to all URM students received a 79 percent response rate (129/164). The respondents were primarily Hispanic (62 percent Mexican American and other Hispanic) and African American (33 percent) and had attended a college pipeline program (53 percent). The top reasons these students chose TAMBCD were reputation, location, and automatic acceptance or familiarity from being in a predental program. Alumni had most influenced them to attend. Regarding support services, the largest percentage reported not using any (44 percent); personal advising and tutoring were reported to be the most commonly used. In terms of climate, discrimination was reported by 22 percent (n=29), mostly from classmates and clinical faculty. The majority (87 percent) reported their cultural competence program was "effective" and agreed that faculty (83 percent), staff (85 percent), and students (75 percent) were culturally competent. Overall, the students were "satisfied" with how they were treated (88 percent), their education (91 percent), and the services/resources (92 percent). This information is being used to continue to improve the school's cultural climate and to conduct a broader assessment of all students.
author list (cited authors)
McCann, A. L., Lacy, E. S., & Miller, B. H.