Date of Award

January 2018

Degree Type

Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

First Advisor

Sherwood Thompson

Department Affiliation

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Second Advisor

Erin Wheeler

Department Affiliation


Third Advisor

Norman W. Powell

Department Affiliation

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies


This study examined the levels of self-efficacy and hope of the students at-risk that participated in a college program with multiple retention initiatives. The students selected were identified as students at-risk due to their high school GPAs and standardized test scores. The initiative focused on enhancing their self-efficacy and hope through additional resources that assisted with a student's academic and social life. The development of self-efficacy has been proven important to a student's academic, cognitive, and personal development. Hope has been proven to be important in finding different routes to success and the motivation a person has to take those routes. This study displays the significant role that multiple retention initiatives can play as it relates to self-efficacy and hope. It is hoped that professionals will be able to create methods that will help students to develop high levels of hope and self-efficacy that will lead to better retention rates for Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).