Master of Science in Organizational Dynamics Theses

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version



Submitted to the Program of Organizational Dynamics, College of Liberal and Professional Studies in the School of Arts and Sciences in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Organizational Dynamics at the University of Pennsylvania

Advisor: Kimberly Torres, Ph.D.


This research and capstone explore how the experiences of Ghanaian and Nigerian first andsecond-generation immigrant women in the U.S. workplace differ from their Black American counterparts. This research specifically focuses on the experiences of millennials (born between 1981 – 1996), Black, women, who had at least three years of work experience. Through interviews including first andsecond-generation Ghanaian and Nigerian women and multi-generational Black American women, the capstone examines issues that include the stereotype threat, emotional tax, and the model minority myth. With the growth in the Black immigrant population over the last century, it is imperative that companies realize the nuanced differences present in these groups (Kposowa, 2002). Many of the women who participated in this study mentioned instances where stereotype threat and emotional tax negatively affected their workplace experiences. In all ten interviews, each woman had at least one instance where she felt that her race played in part in her workplace treatment. All the women felt as though they had to be acutely aware of how they presented themselves in the workplace. There were, however, slight differences in their workplace and educational social experiences, depending on whether they were Black American, or a first or second-generation Ghanaian or Nigerian millennial, immigrant, woman.


Black, women, millennials, diversity and inclusion, immigrant, first-generation, second-generation, emotional tax, stereotype threat, model minority myth, workplace diversity



Date Posted: 31 August 2022