Asian Americans and Family Career-Choice Conflict: A Qualitative Study

Susannah Mattson Mileshin, Fordham University


The aim of this interpretative phenomenological analysis interview study was to explore how first- and second-generation Asian Americans coped with mismatches between the careers their parents hoped they would pursue, and their own desires. Eight first- and second-generation Asian American men and women between the ages of 29 and 35 were interviewed about their families’ attitudes toward career, family career history, and their own career decision processes. An overarching experiential theme of Parental Career Pressure was derived from participants’ narratives. The content and impact of this phenomenon were discussed, as well as implications for counselors who work with first- and second-generation Asian Americans. Although participants spoke about struggling with loneliness and lack of support from families related to career choice, they were almost all employed in chosen careers, suggesting that parental career-choice conflict may not ultimately lead to prolonged career indecision.

Subject Area

Asian American Studies|Counseling Psychology|Occupational psychology

Recommended Citation

Mileshin, Susannah Mattson, "Asian Americans and Family Career-Choice Conflict: A Qualitative Study" (2017). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI10282785.