Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

MS in Dance/Movement Therapy


Dance/Movement Therapy Graduate Program


This is a theoretical based study that focuses on the current disempowered state of Hispanic female adolescents in the United States. As the largest minority group in the country, Hispanics experience an array of issues that commonly plague minority populations, such as higher poverty levels and unemployment, substance abuse, increased school dropout rates, and lower accessibility to quality education and healthcare (American Psychological Association, 2013; McCaffrey, 2007). In addition to those challenges, Hispanic female adolescents face the added difficulty of navigating between the strict gender-specific norms of their Hispanic culture, and the independent and individualized norms present within the United States. Their struggles are evidenced by their high rates of declining mental health, academic performance, and overall sense of empowerment. The study concludes with a discussion advocating for dance/movement therapy as a culturally appropriate and strengths-based therapeutic intervention that will effectively address and improve the struggles present within the population.