Murray State Theses and Dissertations


The pandemic has significantly changed societal structures and individuals’ lives. The early tragedies and stress of the pandemic affected health, relationships, families, education, work, travel, and immigration. Students who entered doctoral programs in 2020 chose a unique time to pursue an already arduous goal amidst unprecedented challenges. Using a phenomenological approach, this study explored doctoral students’ experiences during the pandemic and sought to understand their perspectives of grit. The study aimed to offer first-hand insight into the pandemic’s effects on doctoral students, and add critical contributions to understanding the necessary actions, support systems, and policies for a life in a post-pandemic world.

Year manuscript completed


Year degree awarded


Author's Keywords

pandemic, COVID-19, dissertation, doctoral degree, Doctor of Education (Ed.D.), grit, memory, time-to-degree

Degree Awarded

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Dissertation Committee Chair

Randal Wilson

Committee Member

Teresa Clark

Committee Member

Landon Clark

Document Type