Title page for ETD etd-05112009-154340

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Willis-Walton, Susan M.
URN etd-05112009-154340
Title Nutrition for Some: A Comprehensive Study of Why Eligible Families Leave the WIC Program
Degree PhD
Department Public Administration/Public Affairs
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Gary L. Wamsley Committee Chair
John A. Rohr Committee Member
John W. Dickey Committee Member
Joseph V. Rees Committee Member
  • Organization Theory
  • Research Methodologies for Policy Evaluation
  • WIC
  • Program Evaluation
Date of Defense 2009-04-28
Availability unrestricted
A comprehensive survey of more than 1,500 former participants in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) along with more than 300 semi-structured interviews with former WIC participants were designed and conducted in order to identify the barriers influencing eligible program participants to leave the program prematurely. Results from the two phases of data collection were used to determine why eligible families are leaving the WIC program, to better understand the program participation barriers cited by former program participants in order to facilitate the development of a typology of program “leavers,” and to identify the policy and organizational components that provide context for premature WIC program departure by participants. A narrative approach to organizational understanding and Symbolic Interactionism are utilized to provide a theoretical framework for highlighting program areas which may contribute to the participation barriers discovered in this research. Implications for public administration and policy evaluation are provided.

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