Fostering College Student Success: An Analysis of the Educational Outcomes of Florida College Students Utilizing Relative Caregiver, Road-to-Independence, and Adoption Tuition Exemptions.
Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 1390.
University of Central Florida.
xii, 148 p.
This study investigated the educational outcomes of foster care youth utilizing the Road to Independence, Adopted from DCF, and Relative Caregiver tuition exemptions to pursue enrollment in Florida's state college system during the 2012-2013 academic year. An extensive literature review was conducted to examine the history of foster care, examine a contemporary portrait of the American foster care system, and the adult outcomes of former foster care. Federal and state policies impacting the population, campus support initiatives at colleges nationwide and the concept of resilience were also explored. In conjunction with the Florida Department of Education's Division of Accountability, Research and Measurement, the Florida Department of Children and Families provided access to a dataset compiled by the Community College and Technical Center MIS department. This file contained enrollment information for foster care youth utilizing one of three tuition exemptions to fund their education-related expenses. While all personal identifiers were eliminated prior to sharing the file, information within the document included student age, gender, race/ethnicity, academic discipline, and degree being pursued. Results of this study yielded some statistically significant differences across tuition exemption type. After examining relationships between gender and race/ethnicity and tuition exemption type, no statistically significant results were found. However, statistical significance was found after examining the relationships between academic degree being pursued and academic major/discipline and tuition exemption type. Many factors impact the experiences of foster care youth in the college classroom. These should be considered when developing programming, policy, and support services aimed at encouraging their success. (Author abstract)
postsecondary education; outcomes; aging out; students; foster adolescents; foster care alumni; young adults; policies; resilience; youth services; studies; Florida