REENTERING WOMEN GRADUATE STUDENTS: LEVELS OF LEADERSHIP AND SELF-ESTEEM WITH RESPECT TO SELECTED VARIABLES

MARY D'ACUNTO, Fordham University

Abstract

This investigation determined and compared responses of reentering and non-reentering women graduate students to measures of leadership and self-esteem. Comparisons were made between the two groups from the perspective of the individual graduate schools of Education, Business, and Law. The two dimensions of leadership (Consideration and Structure) and self-esteem were compared with respect to the variables of age, marital status, number of children, age of last child, yearly income, and academic achievement (grade point average).^ The subjects consisted of 125 students enrolled in Master's, Law and doctoral degree programs in the three graduate schools at Fordham University, Lincoln Center Campus, New York. Of the 125 women, 60 were classified as reentering while 65 were classified as non-reentering. The materials employed were the Personal Data Index, Fleishman's (1969) Leadership Opinion Questionnaire which measured the two dimensions of leadership (Consideration and Structure), and the Coopersmith Inventory (1967) which measured self-esteem.^ The major conclusions of this study were:^ (1) Reentering and non-reentering women had comparable levels of leadership. However, when viewed from respective graduate schools, the Law school women had significantly higher levels of Structure. Therefore, they were the most goal-oriented women in the study.^ High self-esteem levels were reflected for both reentering and non-reentering women and for both groups in the schools of Education and Business. The reentering Law women also reflected high self-esteem. The one exception occurred with non-reentering Law school students who demonstrated only a medium level on this measure.^ (2) A significant positive association was found for age and self-esteem for reentering women.^ (3) Significant negative associations were found for yearly income and Consideration as well as yearly income and Structure for reentering women.^ (4) A significant positive association was found for Spring grade point averages and Consideration for reentering women.^ (5) A significant positive association was found for yearly income and self-esteem for non-reentering women.^ Results indicated that older, reentering Education women reflected traditional role-models as nurturers and care-givers, and had the highest self-esteem of the combined reentering group.^ Reentering Business and Law school women were persons in their mid-thirties who were seeking additional skills and credentials, or second-career options in their lives.^ Younger, non-reentering students were career women who deferred marriage and child-bearing. They tended to be concentrated in the Law School. ^

Subject Area

Educational administration

Recommended Citation

D'ACUNTO, MARY, "REENTERING WOMEN GRADUATE STUDENTS: LEVELS OF LEADERSHIP AND SELF-ESTEEM WITH RESPECT TO SELECTED VARIABLES" (1985). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8600080.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8600080

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