The perception of support services for African American male student-athletes at a Division I university



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The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore perceptions of the influences of student support services, and other factors that contributed to African American male football players’ ultimate success in academics, at a public Division I institution. The qualitative study used online interviews, archival data, and contextual information. The researcher interviewed an associate athletic director, academic advisor, learning specialist, tutor coordinator, tutor, two mentors and personal experiences from 12 student-athletes to provide an understanding regarding support services assisting with student-athletes’ academics. The study focused on the evolving themes between the support service staff and student-athletes which consisted of the most important themes: (a) Recruiting all-around student-athletes with effective communication, (b) Hiring more support service staff (more staff and more diverse staff members, (c) Having trained support staff that can work with student-athletes with disabilities such as various learning disabilities and providing accommodations, and (d) Additional resources available to assist student-athletes with mental health issues. Through interviews from the support staff and African-American male student-athletes, the researcher was able to gain important data that has the potential to improve support services at division I institutions for African-American male student-athletes.



student-athletes, mentors, tutor, advisor, support, services, recruiting, hiring, disabilities, African-American, males, trained, disabilities, accommodations, resources, mental, health, improve,