Queering while Racializing Traditional Conceptions of Resilience through the Experiences of Queer Latino Collegians
Oscar Patrón

About the research


NAEd/Spencer Dissertation Fellowship

Award Year



University of Pittsburgh

Primary Discipline

Latino males have been at the center of policy deliberation and educational reform in recent years. Although they have been labeled as vanishing from higher education, there has been a consistent increase in Latino male enrollment since 1976. As such, I take an asset-based approach that simultaneously provides a more nuanced understanding about Latino men than the negative and pathologizing portrayal found in mainstream media and recent literature. This study explores the heterogeneity within this group by examining the experiences of resilient queer Latino male collegians, a group that has been largely overlooked in this realm of scholarship and that is known to encounter a series of challenges as a result of the intersection of their multiple identities. Drawing from a conceptual framework that has been mainly defined by psychologists and psychiatrists, I explore the ways queer Latino males undergo a process of resilience while investigating potential limitations in the way such framework has been defined and applied, particularly in relation to race/ethnicity and sexuality. This qualitative investigation employs narrative as the guiding methodology, paying close attention to student experiences through life stories. Data derives from a national sample of queer Latino males from different colleges and universities throughout the United States, particularly drawing from three forms of data collection including, 1) two semi-structured interviews per participant, 2) online responses and group discussions to specific prompts via a private social media page, and 3) the collection of pictures. Practical and theoretical implications are discussed.
About Oscar Patrón
Oscar E. Patrón is a PhD candidate in Administrative and Policy Studies in the School of Education (SOE) at the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt). As an aspiring faculty, Oscar has worked in a variety of roles while at Pitt––from being a teaching assistant to serving on the SOE’s academic and student affairs committees. Upon his arrival at Pitt, Oscar joined his advisor’s, Dr. Gina A. Garcia, research team, where they conducted a mixed-methods multi-site investigation examining the leadership development of Latinos in college. They are now working on the Midwest Hispanic-Serving Institutions Study.Currently, Oscar is a visiting pre-doctoral scholar and research associate in the Race and Equity Center at the University of Southern California (USC), where he has served as a teaching assistant for Dr. Shaun Harper’s Race in Education course. While at USC, Oscar is completing his dissertation, which investigates the resilience processes that queer Latino collegians undergo in relation to their social identities and surrounding contexts.Oscar completed his BA from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (U of I), double majoring in Sociology and Latinx Studies. Oscar’s passion for research started from his participation in the Ronald E. McNair Scholars program while at the U of I, where he presented his research on the complexities of identity and labels regarding the Latinx population at various conferences. Oscar has also been awarded the K. Leroy Irvis Fellowship, Provost Development Fund, and was recognized as an American Association of Hispanics in Higher Education Fellow.

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