The United States faces shortages of professionals in science, technology, engineering, and math enterprises, which are complicated by underrepresented minorities facing systemic barriers to their educational and career success. Addressing this, we used social cognitive career theory and critical consciousness to create a program named Poder (Spanish for “to be able to” and “power”). We analyzed interviews from 36 diverse community college students who experienced this 5-week program, which included mentoring and seed funding opportunities as they designed ventures addressing societal problems. Initial findings highlighted themes on how students developed and integrated critical consciousness, entrepreneurship self-efficacy, and technological understanding during Poder. Students displayed high expectations for entrepreneurship careers that leveraged technology to promote social change, as well as high expectations to persist through graduation and/or transfer to a 4-year university.
- critical consciousness
- social cognitive career theory
- underrepresented minorities
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Psychology
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management