Date of Graduation

Fall 12-15-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (PsyD)


School of Nursing and Health Professions




Clinical Psychology (PsyD)

First Advisor

Alette Coble-Temple

Second Advisor

Dominique Broussard

Third Advisor

Konjit Page


The experiences Black Americans have faced when standing against racial trauma have impacted the Black community for generations. Though previous generations faced overt styles of racism throughout the eras of slavery and Jim Crow, the invalidation and discrimination have remained consistent within the experiences of the Black American millennial (BAM) generation. Current experiences BAMs face are a combination of both overt and covert styles of racism, which increase mental exhaustion, reduce motivation, and leave the individual psychologically defenseless. The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the experiences of BAMs in the face of racial trauma. This qualitative research study utilized thematic analysis to explore the lived experiences and narratives of BAMs through in-depth interviewing to assess the experiences of eight BAMs. The final analysis yielded four domains and 12 themes: (1) specific locations BAMS experience racial trauma: (a) school, (b) work, (c) community, (d) perpetrators; (2) the style of racism BAMs experience and strategies utilized to navigate BAMs’ environment: (e) microaggressions, (f) adaptability; (3) strategies BAMs are using in the face of racial trauma: (g) internalized coping, (h) externalized coping; and (4) conflictual viewpoints have BAMS identified in the face of racial trauma: (i) community, (j) COVID-19, (k) social media platforms, and (l) protest engagement. This study provides insight on the locations BAMs identified with an increased amount of racial trauma, perpetrators that impact BAMs’ experience within the various locations, internalized and externalized styles of coping, and conflictual viewpoints on salient topics that impacted BAMs’ experience. Furthermore, results from this study can be utilized to inform all generations not only of the set of challenges BAMs experience but also to spark dialogue across generations that will promote collective healing and resist racial trauma.