Year of Publication


Date of Thesis


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


The purpose of this exploratory study is to describe the professional characteristics of Higher Education Opportunity Program (HEOP) directors at independent colleges and universities in New York State and examine their attitudes and perceptions concerning communication with their immediate superiors, job stress and satisfaction, role conflict and ambiguity, organizational support and opportunities for professional advancement. Hypotheses were also developed to investigate particular relationships between selected variables. A survey regarding HEOP directors' attitudes/perceptions of communication and other job factors was mailed to HEOP directors at the eighty independent colleges/universities in New York State, listed in the official Directory of Higher Education Opportunity Programs (1988).

  1. HEOP directors are generally African-Americans, equally represented among men and women who range between the ages of 35-44. They hold at least a Master's degree and earn between $25,000-$39,000 annually. Mostly employed at four-year colleges, their tenure within HEOP ranges between 1-6 years, with reportage to an academic administrator.
  1. Even though 68% of the directors reported that their immediate superiors expressed appreciation for the complexity of their role, 55% reported that their immediate superior did not act as a mentor.
  2. 84% of the directors reported their jobs were very stressful.
  3. 80% of the directors reported they were satisfied in their jobs.
  4. 95% of the directors reported that their job responsibilities were clear and 91% reported that students were their first priority.
  5. Almost 50% of program directors experienced problems with role conflict.
  6. 70% of program directors experienced questionable organizational support.
  7. Over 90% reported that there were not many opportunities for professional advancement on their campuses.
  8. Job stress was statistically related to the degree of organizational support and the presence of open communication channels for problem solving was statistically related to job satisfaction.

Included in

Communication Commons



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