The impact African American role models have on African American junior high school students

Ernest Lee Turner, Fordham University


This study sought to determine the impact that African-American role models have on the behavior of African-American youth.^ The subjects consisted of 16 male and 34 female African-American students in a Bronx, New York junior high school. The areas of concern for the students were appearance, educational background, strategies for success, and the students' perception of the success of the role models.^ A survey was administered to the group to gather certain information that would yield data to be used to help determine the impact of the African-American role models presented to them. In addition to presenting African-American role models to the students in the school, the students also were given field trips that enabled them to observe these African-American role models in their place of employment and their community.^ The findings and conclusions of this study have implications for teachers and educators concerned with providing African-American youth with the skills necessary to assimilate into the mainstream of American life. However, for the majority of African-American youth who are disadvantaged, positive African-American role models are needed. Disadvantaged African-American youth are less likely to become assimilated. They have evolved a style of life, a unique culture as it were, as an adjustment to their status as economically, socially, and politically underprivileged. For African-American youth who are economically, socially, and politically underprivileged, school provides not only the place to acquire the skills necessary to compete in an increasingly technological society, but opportunities for socialization and recreation. The school offers African-American youth an escape from the ghetto and an opportunity to acquire educational role models. ^

Subject Area

Black studies|Educational sociology|School counseling

Recommended Citation

Turner, Ernest Lee, "The impact African American role models have on African American junior high school students" (1993). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9412152.