Document Type

Capstone Project

Publication Date

Fall 2015


This paper examines the structure of identities amongst Black students at predominately white institutions – particularly focusing on Wofford College. Extensive focus groups were conducted with members of the Black student body to further progress research. Racism regarding Black students and their social identity in addition to how it has structured the social identity amongst students are introduced in along with the identities of students on Wofford’s campus. Discrimination on campus has had the effect of narrowing Black students’ options for creating social identity and participating in campus community life. Black students regularly face a very confining choice to either socialize with a black community only, assimilate into a predominately white community, or float between both white and black communities, but never achieve a complete sense of belonging into either group due to their divided loyalties to these two groups. The limiting identity choices affect not only the social behavior, but also individual identities and academic performance amongst students of color.



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