SURF

Aaron Solorio

Untapped Potential: A Comparative Approach Between Traditional and Continuation High School

I intend to produce a comparative study between first-generation, low-income, Latino and African-American males attending continuation high schools and those attending traditional high schools. I will conduct twenty qualitative interviews consisting of ten participants who have attended continuation high school and ten participants who have attended traditional high school- all of whom have attended their respective school within the last ten years. Although there is literature on the school environment and the challenges that students face, I aim to explore the factors that lead students to either continue into higher education, or take an alternative trajectory. I will be paying special attention to the participants’ social networks, school resources, and their criminalization. From my findings, there will be further implications for a better educational curriculum along with providing administrative staff with student narratives. Documenting the students’ lived experiences can be utilized to highlight their needs and in turn could be used to help facilitate changes in the classroom setting.

Message to Sponsor

I appreciate having had the opportunity to be SURF Fellow and conduct my own research project during the summer. This experience has led me to completing a honors thesis in Sociology. These past months have not only served in enhancing my research skills, but they have also been a lesson on how to improve as a researcher, scholar, and person. Being surrounded by like-minded scholars has given me confidence in my ability to continue conducting research and producing knowledge in my academic field. The SURF Fellowship has also given me the confidence to apply to a PhD in Education, in hopes to continue my work as a researcher, and one day become a professor. Your donation is greatly appreciated!
  • Major: Sociology
  • Sponsor: Anonymous Donor
  • Mentor: David J. Harding