Latina leadership: empowering Latinas through single-gender education
In researching single-gender education, higher numbers of Latina educational leaders were found to have been in administrative positions indicating a strong sense of leadership skills. Further exploration found there is much literature about academic achievement among female students in a single-gender class (Ward & Grant, 1985; Mead, 2003), but there is not much literature regarding the development of leadership skills among females, specifically Latinas (Louque & Garcia, 2000). Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore the development, specifically leadership development and empowerment of Latinas, who attended a single-gender high school and who are now educational leaders. This was attained by utilizing a narrative design to explore how and when Latinas developed leadership skills. Initially, participants were interviewed, and then transcribed and uploaded to NVivo 9 for data analysis. Further analysis took place through the utilization of a LatCrit Feminist theory. The themes revealed through data analysis were: empowerment through leadership opportunities, community service experiences, family involvement, culture identity development, caring nurturing environment and providing mentors. The participants' experiences discussed the importance of positive opportunities and experiences leading to a fostering environment for Latinas.