College Choice Process of Latino Undocumented Students: Implications for Recruitment and Retention

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National Association for College Admission Counseling, Journal of College Admission


This report outlines the major influences on the college choice process of Latino undocumented students with a specific focus on the “choice” stage of the broader college opportunity process (Hossler & Gallagher 1987; Hossler, Schmidt, & Vesper 1999). As theorized by Hossler et. al (1987; 1999), the choice stage is where students make final decisions on postsecondary options from choice sets crafted during the “search” stage of college choice and analysis of the best place to attend given where they were admitted, wait-listed or denied acceptance. In other words, this paper focuses on why students decided to attend the respective postsecondary institution they selected. More importantly, the author offers findings from original qualitative research that highlight the voices of the students who participated in this inquiry in order to assist admission and counseling professionals in their effort to help undocumented students and their families navigate the college planning and decision-making process.



student aspirations, undocumented students, college application process, college choice