Outside Connections Matter: Reflections on the College Choice Process for Gifted Black Students from New York City
Ramon B. Goings
Loyola University Maryland, USA
 
Christopher J.P. Sewell
College at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA
 
 Through the reflections of 17 Black adults (10 male, 7 female) who were formally identified as gifted as children in NYC Public schools, this study explores their college selection process. Moreover, we investigate how being in gifted and talented programs influenced the support they received while looking at colleges and how this influenced their college selection. Using Hossler and Gallagher’s Three-Phase Model for Student College Choice and social and cultural capital as theoretical lenses, findings suggest that the participants did not see much support from their college counselors; rather, they relied on other people and programs to facilitate their college applications and college selection decisions. Moreover, participants college choice decisions were heavily influenced by their belief that the college was an intellectually and socially affirming space. We provide implications for NYC public schools specifically, K-12 generally, and higher education.


Dr. Ramon B. Goings is an assistant professor of educational leadership at Loyola University Maryland. His research interests are centered on exploring the academic and social experiences of gifted/high-achieving Black males PK-PhD, diversifying the teacher and school leader workforce, and investigating the contributions of historically Black colleges and universities. Dr. Goings is the author of over 40 scholarly publications including serving as co-editor of the following books: Graduate Education at Historically Black Colleges and University: A Student Perspective (2016, Routledge Press), R.A.C.E Mentoring Through Social Media: Black and Hispanic Scholars Share Their Journey in The Academy (2016, Information Age), and How Obama Changed the Political Landscape (Prager, 2017). Along with his scholarship Dr. Goings serves as the Editor-In-Chief of the Journal of African American Males in Education. Dr. Goings was named a 2017 Emerging Scholar by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education and received the 2016 College Board Professional Fellowship.
 
 
Dr. Christopher J.P. Sewell is Associate Dean of the College at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. His scholarship focuses on studying the experiences of gifted students of color, how schooling and policies around gifted and talented education affect students of color long-term experiences, the ways in which LGBTQ+ gifted students negotiate their academic, racial and sexual identities, and the experiences of Black students at Predominantly White Institutions.