This study is part of a larger student retention effort at Texas State University, a large, Hispanic-Serving Institution committed to this goal. As such, this study was undertaken to gain a deeper understanding of what experiences women credited for influencing the development of their career interest goals and their motivation to succeed in academic courses related to studying in a STEM field. As this study was conducted at a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI), it involves a unique and diverse audience versus the majority of related studies reviewed in the existing literature. It includes a substantial representation of Latina and African American women as part of the participant sample, and their voices are carefully represented and analyzed to identify experiences that appear to contribute to student interest development and motivation.
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