Rawlings School of Divinity


Doctor of Education in Christian Leadership (EdD)


Gary Bredfeldt


African American Women, Higher Education, Leadership, Transformational Leadership, Women in Higher Education


Education | Higher Education


African American women hold unique experiences in the pursuit of leadership roles within faith-based colleges and universities. Since leadership occurs within a cultural context, there is sound reason to explore if transformational leadership behavior could positively impact the lived experiences of African American women within faith-based colleges and universities who seek to enter into leadership roles. The survey was cross-sectional with data collected at one period and returned to the researcher. This research design utilized qualitative interview as the means of data collection. Five open-ended research questions guided the research study. Women were qualified for sampling with employment at a Christian college or university located in the eastern, midwestern, southern and western regions of the United States with active participation in or not in the Council of Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU). The purpose of this phenomenological study is to understand the lived experiences among African American women seeking leadership roles in faith-based higher education institutions. The study sought to discover if African American women perceive the presence of transformational leadership behavior within the organizational culture and leadership structure of faith-based higher education institutions in their pursuit of leadership positions.