First Advisor

Rodriguez, Katrina L.

Document Type


Date Created



Five undergraduate students shared stories about the wisdom they gained while working to integrate their global citizen identity into their every day lives. Using a postcolonial theoretical framework and portraiture methodology, this inquiry followed participants during a 13-day global service-learning experience in Yucatán, Mexico. Through on-site observations, creative representations, and two in-depth interviews, provide new understandings about the ways in which five diverse college students integrate and illuminate their global citizen identities emerged. Participant portraits revealed themes based on global citizen identity integration as it relates to personal history, ethnic legacy, and educational narratives among participations. Further analysis revealed participants’ strong commitment to practicing global citizenship intentionally through postcolonial and justice-oriented frameworks. Implications and recommendations for student development and identity theorists include pushing theoretical discourse beyond national contexts when exploring the lived experience of college students. For professionals working in global education, findings from this inquiry create space for educators to re-examine current practices in study abroad education, philosophical underpinning of service-learning, and the value of fostering global citizenship opportunities for students from underrepresented backgrounds. Lastly, implications and recommendations for teaching encourage educators to adopt holistic pedagogies that honor hybrid spaces as deeply transformational opportunities.

Abstract Format



World citizenship; Undergraduates -- Attitudes; College students -- Attitudes; Student development; Service learning; Postcolonialism


267 pages

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Copyright is held by author.