Examples of these stressors include limited finances, issues with time management, preventing and coping with injuries, managing success and failure, and maintaining relationships. In addition to the general stressors that student-athletes face, African American female student-athletes experience unique stressors due to the intersectionality of their identities as both African Americans and women (as well as other potential dimensions such as socioeconomic status and sexual orientation). These stressors include: race-related stress, feeling silenced, and being subjected to negative stereotypes. Despite the significant representation of African American female student-athletes in collegiate sport, there is only one known stress management intervention specifically designed for African American female student-athletes. Therefore, the purpose of this research project was to develop the curriculum for a stress management workshop to assist African American female student-athletes with engagement in culturally-syntonic and effective stress management techniques. In order to inform the curriculum, three autobiographies of African American female athletes were analyzed with particular attention to descriptions of their college years. Thematic analysis of these autobiographies was integrated with relevant empirical and intervention-related literature to develop a four-session workshop. The curriculum was evaluated by two former African American female student-athletes and two psychologists with experience working with the target population. Strengths, weaknesses, and suggestions for the further development of the workshop’s curriculum are provided. Practical implications and recommendations for mental health professionals and the athletic community are presented.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (PsyD) -- Psychology; African American women college students -- Mental health; African American college athletes -- Mental health; Stress management for women -- Case studies

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Harrell, Shelly P.;