Date of Award

Summer 2023

Degree Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Education, PhD


School of Educational Studies

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Emilie Reagan

Dissertation or Thesis Committee Member

Claudia Bermudez

Dissertation or Thesis Committee Member

Frances Gipson

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Terms of Use for work posted in Scholarship@Claremont.

Rights Information

© 2023 Maritza Azucena Salazar Cha


College Adviser, College and Career Center, College Counselor, Latinx, Pláticas, Socioeconomically Disadvantaged

Subject Categories



The purpose of this study was to explore college counselors’ experiences establishing relationships, engaging, and sharing college knowledge with socioeconomically disadvantaged Latinx students. Framed by Social Capital Theory-Institutional Agents and Lat Crit, and employing plática methodology, this study aimed to understand the experiences of both college counselors and Latinx high school students as they enter in diálogo around the college guidance process. This research sheds light on the constraints and opportunities in the college guidance process, contributing to research and practice for a critical group of high school students. Twenty-one students and three college counselors/advisers from three high schools in a large urban district in Southern California were interviewed in the form of “pláticas” and “diálogo.” Interviews were analyzed through hand coding. I used the elemental coding method (Saldaña, 2021) which was in vivo coding and descriptive coding (e.g., in line with the frameworks of Social Capital Theory-Institutional Agents and LatCrit). The counselor interviews revealed the following themes: college counselors/advisers created diálogo with students because all three college counselors/advisers were teachers at their site prior to becoming college counselors/advisers; college counselors/advisers felt they had similar backgrounds as their students; and college counselors/advisers understood that promotion was part of maintaining the diálogo between them and the students. The student interviews revealed the following themes: the pandemic delayed the diálogo between socioeconomically disadvantaged Latinx students and their college counselors/advisers; differences existed between a true first-generation student and a first-generation student who had siblings or family members who had attended college before; and nonprofits and teachers played a role in maintaining and entering in diálogo with the college counselor/adviser. This dissertation offered implications for research, policy, and practice for college counselors and increasing college access for socioeconomically disadvantaged Latinx students.



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