Chicanas in IR: Data-Driven Advocacy for Latinx Students from Institutional Research Contexts in the Community College

Elvira J. Abrica, Martha Rivas


Various inequities and challenges facing Latinx students in community colleges continue to be documented. Yet, less documented are the challenges associated with advocacy efforts to support Latinx and other underrepresented Students of Color within the community college sector. There is not often pause to consider: who advocates for Latinx students? When and how does this advocacy take shape? In this article, we offer Chicana testimonios as institutional research (IR) professionals to highlight ways we experience, respond to, and challenge institutionalized racism and systemic obstacles to advocate for Latinx students in the California community college system. We situate our testimonios within a critique of the pillar of neutrality associated with the institutional research profession and argue for a critical examination of the ways in which IR may play an active role in the perpetuation or the dismantling of educational inequities in California community colleges.

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