Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management

Committee Chair/Advisor

Corliss Outley

Committee Member

Benjamin Bennett

Committee Member

Arelis Moore

Committee Member

Aby Sene-Harper

Committee Member

Harrison Pickney


Latino youth are one of the fastest-growing populations in the U.S., projected to make up one-third of the current youth population by 2050 (Passel, 2011; Passel & Cohn, 2008; Silva, 2017). Yet, Latino youth are an understudied population, and they face unique challenges, including status-related stressors (Ellis et al., 2022; Camarillo et al., 2023). Therefore, their lived experiences and stories need to be explored. Using collaborative visual methods and CBPR principles, this dissertation explores, facilitates discussions and seeks to understand Latino youth's lived experiences (Shaw, 2021; Loeffler, 2004; Wallerstein et al., 2017). This dissertation aims to understand Latino youth's lived experiences in Upstate South Carolina in connection to their status-related stressors (Ellis, 2021). First, a scoping review focusing on Latino youth and outdoor recreation experiences introduces the current literature and identifies the knowledge gap. Next, guided by the Chicano/Latino Ethnic Identity Model (Ruiz, 1990) and the Cycles of Deportability Framework (Ellis, 2021), the second study explores Latino youth's ethnic identity challenges and outdoor recreation participation as a coping strategy for their status-related stressors using photo elicitation. Study three focuses on Latino youths' meaning of outdoor recreation and community concerns/solutions using the photovoice method. Altogether, this dissertation discusses the important role of outdoor recreation in Latino youth lives, particularly second-generation Latino youth from mixed-status families. Finally, together, these three studies inform scholars, community members, community stakeholders, and organizations of the complexity of Latino youth stories and how to better serve this population and promote their resilience and empowerment.

Author ORCID Identifier

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