Though most youth in the foster care system aspire to attend college, few have the opportunity to do so. For myriad reasons, including lack of historical representation on college campuses, sub- par Pk-12 education, and postsecondary barriers to admissions, enrollment, and financial aid, most college students who experienced foster care depart college without earning a degree. As the barriers to college for this population of students emerges, postsecondary institutions are pre- paring their campuses for students with unique needs. This qualitative study explores how student affairs professionals in one university system support college students previously in foster care. Professionals and teams of professionals working at six different institutions across the university system participated in interviews that emphasized the ways campuses used resources to meet students’ hierarchy of needs. Based on the results of this research, student affairs professionals support students’ foundational physiological and safety needs in myriad ways. In doing so, student affair professionals add to the motivation necessary for students to move towards belonging, esteem, and actualization.

First Page


Last Page


Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

ref_gcpa2021370202.pdf (160 kB)
Supplemental Reference List with DOIs