Maximilian T. Schuster - Research and Grants


Schuster, M. T. (2019). Exploring the Experiences of First-Year Students with Minoritized Identities with Campus Climate during the 2016 Presidential Election. ACPA Commission for Admissions, Orientation, and First-Year Experiences and National Resource Center for the First-Year Experience and Students in Transition Research Grant Award

This qualitative study reports the experiences of 16 first-year students at an urban university during the 2016 presidential election. Guided by a constructivist theoretical perspective and interpretative thematic analysis, this study finds that students with multiple minoritized identities, including students of color and LGBTQIA+ students, experienced increased hostilities that were induced by the divisive political context. To contend with this climate, minoritized students engaged in activism in order to rebuff these hostilities and claim empowerment.

Schuster, M. T. (2017). Exploring the Campus Experiences of LGB Student Leaders with Intersecting Minoritized Identities. ACPA Coalition for Gender and Sexuality Identities.

The purpose of this study is to extend current knowledge by exploring the intersections of the lived experiences of LGB leaders in student clubs and organizations in their institutions (Renn, 2010). LGB student leaders with intersecting minoritized identities are the focus of this study because their unique situation as student leaders requires them to simultaneously serve as leaders, advocates, and social justice educators (Renn, 2007). This discrete population of students in leadership roles provides a revitalized lens through which intersectionality and minoritized experiences can be better understood. Thus, this study has the potential to broaden our collective understanding how student affairs policy and practice can be better leveraged to more robustly support a student population that assumes multiple roles, navigates multiple identities, and often endures campus discrimination (Rankin et al., 2010). Furthermore, in line with Renn (2007), this study may allow for further theorization and conceptualization of identity development for this population of students.

Schuster, M. T. (2017). Rejuvenating cultural perspectives: Minoritized students' lived experiences as resident assistants. ACUHO-I.

There is a current need in higher education research to better understand the experiences of students who are minoritized due to their race, class, gender, and sexual orientation. This need extends to the experiences of student leaders, such as resident assistants, on college campuses. This study employs a cultural constructivist methodology informed by a constructivist theoretical perspective to explore the ways in which minoritized students serving as resident assistants experience, perceive, and make sense of their roles as resident assistants. Data will be collected through semi-structured one-on-one interviews and analyzed thematically.

Research Interests

Maximilian T. Schuster


University of Pittsburgh
5907 Wesley W. Posvar Hall
230 South Bouquet Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15260