Aerial Photo of Campus
News and Announcements

Rahjaun Gordon

Associate Director of Educational Opportunity Fund and Academic Success at Montclair State University and Family Science and Human Development PhD Student

Posted in: Spotlights

Photo of student Rahjaun Gordon

I chose this field of study and program because of the social justice component with the College of Education and Human Services and the interdisciplinary freedom of a program that allows me to focus on the science of family impact on educational outcomes of minority populations.

As a doctoral student at Montclair State University, I have participated in two research projects. The first was with Dr. Robert Reid’s research laboratory for the Paterson Coalition against Substance Abuse (P-CASA) and Project C.O.P.E. (Community Organizing Prevention & Empowerment) in partnership with Paterson Charter School for Science and Technology (PCSST). This project was led by Dr. Ijeoma Opara, who was a research fellow in Dr. Reid’s lab, and was comprised of a photo voice contest in which we assisted high school students as they created drug prevention and HIV/AIDS awareness videos based on experiences in their communities. We also conducted qualitative interviews with students about their experiences with the project. The project concluded with a peer mentoring initiative for senior students.

I have also worked with Dr. Pearl Stewart to examine the experiences of first-generation college students. For this project, Dr. Stewart and I conducted more than 15 qualitative interviews with first-generation Black male college students. I have had the opportunity to present on this research at the Black Doctoral Network Conference in October 2018, and Dr. Stewart and I will be presenting the findings of our research at the National Council for Family Relations (NCFR) Conference in November 2019. Dr. Stewart and I are also working on a manuscript titled Unacknowledged Influences of First-Generation Low-Income African American Male College Students.