Open Access Thesis
College students--Religious life--Middle West; College students--Middle West--Conduct of life; Universities and colleges--Middle West--Religion;
The field of student affairs addresses diversity and inclusion for all students; however, the student affairs profession may not provide support and resources for all developmental identities. There are a small number of public institutions that provide resources to help address and support students’ religious and spiritual development. It is known that private colleges are able to provide spiritual and religious resources for students, but the current study investigates the opportunities that lie within public universities. Literature has provided evidence of the importance of religious and spiritual discussions and resources for holistic student development, and the significance of this study lays in understanding the commitment, or lack thereof, to providing religious and spiritual resources at public institutions. The research question this study answered is as follows: What are public university administrators’ perceptions of and knowledge about religious and spiritual resources on their campus?
The qualitative study interviewed 11 administrators at a large, doctoral university. The interview questions were developed around three major categories of research: the current status of religion and spirituality at Cabin University, campus and student needs regarding religion and spirituality, and the administration’s personal role and thought.
This study found there could be and should be more religious and spirituality resources available to Cabin University students. In summary, it was found that interfaith events, increased education, a building or space devoted to religion and spirituality, and investment in personnel to oversee the space would best provide the necessary resources for students to aid them in becoming culturally competent and developing holistically.
This study enables future researchers with the ability to further explore what is being done well or could potentially be introduced to campuses to ensure that students are developing holistically, because, as supported by the study, religion and spirituality must be incorporated into the work of student affairs professionals to foster holistic student development.
Date of Award
Master of Arts in Education
Department of Educational Leadership and Postsecondary Education
1 PDF file (vi, 91 pages)
©2017 - Kayla J. Stafford
Stafford, Kayla J., "Student affairs approaches to religion and spirituality in U.S. public higher education" (2017). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 362.