Document Type



Doctor of Education


Educational Practice

Date of Defense


Graduate Advisor

Dr. Thomasina Hassler, Ph.D.


Dr. JaNae’ Alfred,Ph.D.

Dr. Robert Good


This autoethnographic dissertation research explores Critical White Studies (CWS) and racial trauma and their impact on Students of Color in a higher education setting. This study aims to challenge the deficit thinking of white educators who perpetuate racism in higher education. The relationship is examined to dismantle the white ideology of white educators who believe they have the same experiences of their Students of Color regardless of their own similar experiences. Through personal narratives the author will share the complexity of CWS and Racial Trauma. The findings suggest white educators need to examine their white identity and become culturally responsive to the needs and experiences of Students of Color. In this text, the author purposefully capitalizes “Persons of Color,” “Students of Color,” “Black” and “Racial Trauma” as a tribute to those who have endured Racial Trauma across history. Conversely, the word “white” is intentionally written in lowercase to distance it from its historical association with power and supremacy.