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, 19 (9), 933-9

Can Cross-Group Friendships Influence Minority Students' Well-Being at Historically White Universities?

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Can Cross-Group Friendships Influence Minority Students' Well-Being at Historically White Universities?

Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton et al. Psychol Sci.

Abstract

Past research has demonstrated the negative impact of race-based rejection sensitivity (RS-race) on institutional belonging and satisfaction among minority-group students in predominantly White universities. Given research documenting the benefits of cross-group friendship for intergroup attitudes, we tested whether friendships with majority-group peers would attenuate the effects of RS-race within these contexts. In a longitudinal study of African American students (Study 1), cross-group friendships with majority-group peers buffered students high in RS-race from lack of belonging and dissatisfaction at their university. An experimental intervention (Study 2) that induced cross-group friendship replicated the findings and established their specificity for minority-group students. We discuss implications for efforts toward diversifying educational settings.

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