The researcher conducted a qualitative interview study that identified barriers to higher education experienced by African-American women living in the rural South. The research questions were (1) What is the role of social capital in the accessibility of higher education for African-American females in the rural South? (2) How does social context impact accessibility to higher education? Eight African-American women ranging in age from 18-30, residing in rural southern communities in South Carolina who had some college credits but were no longer pursuing a post-secondary degree or had not completed any college credits leading to an associate’s or bachelor’s degree participated in the study. Three themes representing commonalities of barriers to higher education for African-American women living in the rural south were developed from the data. The commonalities were (a) sense of belonging: familiarity and "not a good fit"; (b) nature of relationships; and (c) isolation and lack of opportunity: neighborhood/environment and self-identity/self-esteem/self-awareness. Social capital played a significant role in access to higher education for the participants. The findings of the study revealed decreased higher education social capital impacted access to higher education. Positive and influential social connections were imperative to increasing social capital and access to higher education. Rurality created a sense of spatial and psychological distance leading to decreased social capital that in turn limited opportunities for accessing college.