Against the Professorial Odds: Barriers as Building Blocks for Educational Advancement

McDonald et al. / Journal of Advanced Academics / November 2020

This article describes three female professors’ experiences to attain degrees (bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate) as first-generation college students (FGCS) and become academics. Their individual stories are shared through narratives, which capture crucial episodes of overcoming challenges. Because completion of a terminal degree by FGCS (of the Baby Boomer generation) is statistically low, these professors are outliers to the norm. Discussion identifies factors that aided the educators in their educational advancement.