Multiracial Students at W&M

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Our research aims to examine the experiences of multiracial students at William & Mary and how that impacts their sense of belonging here. 

As of 2022, 6% of William & Mary’s undergraduate student population identify themselves as being multiracial (William & Mary, 2021). 

We feel that it is important to acknowledge and research the experiences of multiracial individuals in college because of certain challenges they can face. 

We want to evaluate at what point in multiracial identity development college undergraduate students are in and what factors are influencing their attitudes toward their own racial identity. 

One of the challenges that multiracial individuals can face when investigating identity-based organizations is not feeling welcome in monoracial groups on campus; mixed-race students who create their own organizations typically cite “feelings of not being ‘[insert racial term here] enough’ for the monoracial groups” (Ozaki & Johnston, 2008, pg. 57). 

In college, those who experience a sense of belonging are more likely to engage in their studies which leads them to be more successful in the long term than those who do not experience a sense of belonging (Gopalan & Brady, 2020). 

This project was inspired by personal experiences as a multiracial student at William & Mary. 

As a freshman, I found myself in a difficult place when it came to this part of my identity, especially with clubs and organizations. As a multiracial student attending a PWI, it was very difficult for me to feel like I found my place in terms of where my personal identity would be accepted. I never felt like I was Asian enough to join a club like AASI or SASA, but I also certainly felt different to the other white students I was surrounded by as a person who comes from a very different background. I didn’t know any other multiracial people that I could talk to and feel like I shared characteristics with because William & Mary has such a small multiracial population. These personal experiences are what inspired me to do this research project and I hope that one day there can be a space on campus where multiracial people feel that they can share their experiences and feel a distinct sense of belonging. 

This research is important for future students because it could inform the potential need for a third space on campus that can better support multiracial students and where multiracial students can feel that they belong. 

Fund Name: Experiences of Multiracial Students at W&M Study
Fund Restriction: To provide support for a study on the experiences of multicultural students at William & Mary, including compensation for participants.
Department: Psychological Sciences
Fund Administrator: Chair, Psychological Sciences Department

Thank You and An Update on The Project

Hello all, 

Firstly, thank you so much for your generous contributions to this project. It will make a huge difference to this research and hopefully W&M students for years to come. 

We are currently in the process of analyzing data from this past semester and starting this spring we collect data from even more participants thanks to your donations. 

Thank you again and I hope you all have a spectacular new year. 


73 days ago by Hannah Khan

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