Publication Date

Spring 2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)




Rebeca Burciaga


Classified Professional Leadership, Community College Classified Professionals, Community College Leadership, Millennial Leadership, Millennial Women of Color, Women of Color in Leadership

Subject Areas

Educational leadership


This study centers Millennial Women of Color (MWOC) California Community College Professionals as institutional influencers by understanding how their leadership practices support the success of marginalized, minoritized, and historically underrepresented students and equity-advancing institutional change. In this study I use the term “influencer” to reflect the impact that MWOC, working as classified professionals at a CCC who are committed to serving as leaders beyond their job duties have on their students and within their institutions. The use of “influencer” in this study addresses three different areas that summarize the study’s findings. First, the theme “Key-Makers not Gatekeepers'' addresses the ways that the participants work to open doors for others, leveraging whatever power, privilege, and resources they have, to help others gain access to spaces and places both inside and outside of their institutions. Second, the theme “Influence over Power and Embodying the Intention of Leadership'' addresses the way the participants have (re)imagined leadership by adopting collaborative, inclusive, and equity-minded practices to challenge traditional frameworks of leadership focused on a leader/follower binary. Third, the theme “Leadership as a Personal Ethic Not Just a Professional Skill” addresses the personal connection that participants have to their work as hyper-marginalized educators who hold a commitment to serving marginalized, minoritized and underrepresented students and aim to embody leadership practices that are racially conscious, socially just, and equity-minded.