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    Arts & Humanities

    Student examines academic success among African Americans

    By csmurrey
    Published: April 27, 2010

    Martinque Jones, senior and psychology major in the College of Liberal Arts, has been investigating how cultural identity and academic attitudes affect the academic achievement of African American high school students.

    With support from the Ronald E. McNair Program and Drs. Kevin Cokley and Samoan C. Johnson, Jones collected more than 120 surveys for analysis at various schools in the Houston Independent School District. Recognizing a deficit at the university’s campus, Jones also helped charter the Association of Black Psychologists.

    Above, Jones discusses her findings, personal experiences and hopes for the future of African American high school students.

    Read a transcript of the interview (PDF).

    • Quote 2
      Shenika said on May 31, 2010 at 6:18 p.m.
      Great video! As a tenth grade African-American student, I can honestly say that there is an academic achievement gap between me and some of the other ethnic students who attend my school. That cant all be blamed on the student, but the teachers who have no will in helping us. It's funny that i came across this video because my counselor approached me just this Friday asking me about contributing in making a group based on the success of the few African-Americans attending my school. The reason for her coming to me was because she's also noticed the achievement gap between the students here. I came across this video while looking up research for my English project based on racial profiling in work and school areas and this most definitely helped me. Thanks!
    • Quote 2
      Dr. Pan said on May 17, 2010 at 6:08 p.m.
      Congratulations! Like a visiting scholar from Brasil at UT, I'd like to know more about your nice research.
    • Quote 2
      Gary Crosby said on May 8, 2010 at 6:07 p.m.
      What a stellar person, I have to say this is a great American, I only wished I knew her. The great thing about this analysis is that it gives us all a chance to improve what were doing now. As in my neighborhood I grew up in, people had fine lives. The graduation rate though was low. It was a well to do black community. You have to look beneath the surface though. When you look further, you tend to see the issues that aggravate the internals of education. Those are what matters, and I think her study brings a new idea of how to help those in need of a successful education.
    • Quote 2
      Jackie said on May 6, 2010 at 2:14 p.m.
      Great research work! Thanks for investigating the topic and hope to see the tangible results applied in a broader setting. Continue your efforts!
    • Quote 2
      Jenaya McGowan said on May 2, 2010 at 7:55 p.m.
      Well done Martinque! Keep up the exceptional research and the best of luck to you in graduate school!
    • Quote 2
      m. d. said on May 1, 2010 at 4:16 p.m.
      This is nice that you are doing the research. Family culture is so important when it comes to academic success. It will be great if your findings can be applied by at risk parents and children. They need to realize that people everywhere worldwide encounter obstacles, insults and injuries. The movies Slumdog Millionaire or Precious will show some of the stuff that goes on. But what they should remember is that they have to forget the slights, struggle hard and be determined to get what they want. Sometimes people are nice and other times they aren't but that does not matter. If people can't do it for you, do it yourself. You can love and sustain yourself.
    • Quote 2
      Dr. Kedra Ishop said on May 1, 2010 at 9:30 a.m.
      Martinque, Congratulations on a your achievements! Keep up the good work and continue your pursuit of excellence in scholarship. You have a (continued) wonderful future ahead of you.
    • Quote 2
      Kezia Warner said on April 30, 2010 at 4:55 p.m.
      Marti, I think this is absolutely fantastic! I'm incredibly proud of you! :)
    • Quote 2
      Your Family said on April 29, 2010 at 9:45 p.m.
      Marti, We are so proud of you and will continue to support you in your efforts. "GREAT JOB"
    • Quote 2
      Dr. S. Craig watkins said on April 29, 2010 at 1:39 p.m.
      This is a great project, timely and important. I had Ms. Jones in my class last year and she was outstanding, smart, engaging, and thorough. Keep up the great work, Martinque…I'm expecting great things from you. Best, Dr. Watkins.
    • Quote 2
      Leonard Moore said on April 29, 2010 at 12:50 p.m.
      Martinique, Keep up the good work! Dr. Moore
    • Quote 2
      JaNice Marshall said on April 29, 2010 at 8:41 a.m.
      Martinque...I applaud your research and focus on the examination of academic success among African Americans. I am completing my first year as a doctoral student in the Community College Leadership Program and will focus my research on a similiar topic. I am focusing on how to engage more men of color in higher education, specifically, encouragaing and preparing them for increased success and completion of academic degrees.
    • Quote 2
      Emmanuel Yupit said on April 29, 2010 at 12:26 a.m.
      This Senior is brilliant, and she really has all her concepts and facts down about the cultural diversity and academics. Know her research will do well, and wish her the best :D
    • Quote 2
      UT Senior Investigates Cultural Identity, Achievement African American Students said on April 28, 2010 at 4:10 p.m.
      [...] McNair Scholar Martinque Jones, who is a senior and psychology major in the College of Liberal Arts, has been investigating how cultural identity and academic attitudes affect the academic achievement of African American high school students. Read more about Ms. Jones’ work and see a video on the KNOW Web site. [...]
    • Quote 2
      David Johnson said on April 28, 2010 at 3:48 p.m.
      What you are doing is absolutely necessary! Thank you!!!! While in graduate school I was a participant in an academic self concepts study. It caused me to reflect on all of my experiences (both academic and personal). Much like you I also had a family that was very supportive and stressed the necessity of a good education over less important things. You stated something that is VERY critical to success. It is necessary to have someone that is supportive you in your academic environment. I learned early on that this support system didn't necessarily have to look like me, they only needed to have my best interest at heart. I was fortunate to have extremely supportive teachers all through my formative and secondary years of schooling and none were African American. In the future I hope to work with programs that mentor middle school-aged African Americans. I want this mentorship to cover areas including academic, career and personal development. Studies like yours provide important information in the development of the mentoring programs. Good luck in future endeavors!!!!!
    • Quote 2
      Victoria Foreman said on April 28, 2010 at 1:31 p.m.
      I think that it is wonderful that you are researching these very sensitive topics in the Black community. I do agree that one way to enrich the lives of the Black community is through the lenses of our African history. However, this is a difficult task when you have an entire people who have been institutionalized against their African roots. I hope that you continue your research and work, and bring solutions to these problems. I hope that more Black UT students listen to your testimony and understand the power we possess on campus.
    • Quote 2
      Amber said on April 28, 2010 at 12:11 p.m.
      Great commentary Martinque! As an African American woman your ability to be a strong representation of our abilities has helped to destroy many stereotypes and encourage academic achievement amongst our youth. Keep up the good work.
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