John Jasso Wedel, Ph.D.
Education: Bachelor of Arts in philosophy (speech-rhetoric) (December 2003)
Master of Arts in speech communication from Kansas State University
Master of Arts in philosophy with a certificate in medieval and Renaissance studies from the University of Pittsburgh
Doctor of Philosophy in communication and rhetoric from the University of Pittsburgh
McNair Project: Kansas Hispanic Values Survey (2001)
Mentor: John Exdell, Ph.D.
Identified by the most recent census numbers as the new largest minority group in the United States, the Hispanic populace has become a major political target for recruitment and support by the powers-that-be and the powers-that-would-be. As the Hispanic community continues to grow, efforts to understand their positions and gain knowledge of their political motives have increased on every level of government. Traditionally seen by many as a socially conservative people operating out of a predominately Catholic culture there arises an apparent disconnect between perceived traditional personal values and typical voting patterns of Hispanics, which suggest a leaning towards the left and support of more liberal policies. The intent of this study is to compare and analyze the professed personal and political values of voting age Hispanics living in Kansas in an effort to distinguish whether or not discrepancies do exist on a large scale within the populace, and to decipher what implications this might have on future voting trends and political affiliations. The data was collected through a mailed survey containing personal and political value statements. The recipients of the survey were identified and selected by the researcher through the aid of state political party caucuses, party mailing lists, and party leaders.