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Author ORCID Identifier


Open Access Dissertation

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program


Year Degree Awarded


Month Degree Awarded


First Advisor

essor Sangeeta Kamat

Second Advisor

essor Ximena Zúñiga

Third Advisor

Chrystal A George Mwangi

Subject Categories

Educational Leadership | International and Comparative Education


Over the last two decades, public universities in India have witnessed a demographic change and an increase in the numbers of Dalit and marginalized students on college campuses. However, there is scarcely any research on the impact of the changed demographic and its implications for the Dalit students, campus life and the campus climate. This study focused on experiences of Dalit students and their narratives of resilience in the university life. I conducted interviews and interlocutor observations to understand the experiences and perspectives of Dalit students in a public university in Gujarat. The research drew from scholarship on racial minorities in United States higher education, and developed a theoretical framework and policy to help conceptualize what an inclusive university space would look like in an Indian context. My research provided insights into the academic journeys of Dalit students in Indian universities. The study uncovered a complex understanding of the experiences of Dalit students and also generated institutional and policy frameworks that are relevant and responsive to the issues of Dalit students in higher education.