Phenomenological Inquiry of Intersectional Microaggressions and Identities as Experienced by Psychology Trainees of Color

Cindy Molina, Fordham University


Graduate psychology training programs have taken steps to improve enrollment and retention rates for students of color, such as promoting organization scholarships, providing cultural competence and diversity courses, and offering support opportunities. However, microaggressions related to the trainees' intersecting identities continue to impact their sense of self-worth and belonging, which can significantly affect their clinical work. This qualitative study sought to address the gaps in the literature by exploring how graduate students of color aged 25-38 respond to and cope with microaggressions related to their intersecting identities and how these experiences impact their clinical training. The study used phenomenological methodology to collect and analyze data, revealing ten main, interrelated themes that captured participants' experiences while considering past experiences with intersecting microaggressions. Participants recognized their role in shaping the field, acknowledged identity-based assumptions, and found community building important for voicing concerns and impacting future generations. The findings have significant implications for future research and clinical practice. By illuminating the collective voices of this population, the study highlights the importance of creating safe spaces for conversations around supporting and advocating. It also emphasizes the need to address the impacts of intersecting microaggressions on clinical training and practice. Ultimately, the study underscores the importance of centering the experiences and voices of trainees of color in efforts to promote equity and inclusion in graduate psychology training programs.

Subject Area

Mental health|Psychology|Counseling Psychology|African American Studies

Recommended Citation

Molina, Cindy, "Phenomenological Inquiry of Intersectional Microaggressions and Identities as Experienced by Psychology Trainees of Color" (2023). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI30487627.