Adem Kaya, Paula E. Faulkner, Thomas Martinek, Jerono P. Rotich, Ceola Ross Baber


The purpose of the study was to explore how immigrant youth develop leadership identity through sport participation in a new country. A purposive sample of 15 immigrant and refugee youth participating in a local sport club in the southeastern United States was selected for the study. All of the participants were male; ranged in age from 13 to 18 years old. The country of origin for one was Mexico, while the remaining 14 came from eight different countries in sub-Saharan Africa. This instrumental case study involved in-depth interviews twice with each participant and a group interview with all of them. The researchers used several strategies to establish credibility, including adherence to IRB guidelines for human subjects’ research. Inductive analyses yielded two major categories with several themes for each; (a) sport participation, and (b) leadership skills. Findings related to these themes led to several implications for schools, community-based organizations, and sport clubs that provide programs for immigrant and refugee youth.


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