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Program Staff: Keys to Successful Mentoring Keller, Thomas E., Ph.D., Portland State University, MENTOR Research In Action Series: Program Staff in Mentoring Programs: Qualifications, Training, and Retention Staff Qualifications Staff Retention Staff Training
In one study of both school- and community-based mentoring programs, mentors who received fewer than two hours of training reported the lowest levels of closeness and support in their relationships with youth, whereas mentors who received more than six hours of pre-match training and orientation tended to spend more time with protégés and also reported higher levels of closeness.
While we talk to funders about the impact mentoring has on the “average youth,” no youth is “average”
They differ on:
Age, gender, race, ethnicity
Their stage of development
Dr. Jean Grossman, Senior Vice President for Research at Public/Private Ventures (P/PV)
SUMMARY OF IMPACT FINDINGS BY SUBGROUP Dr. Jean Grossman, Senior Vice President for Research at Public/Private Ventures (P/PV) Population Outcome Overall Boys Girls Minority Boys Minority Girls White Boys White Girls Initiate Drug Use X X X X Initiate Alcohol Use X X Hit Others X X (x) X Self-Reported Grades X X X Skip a Day of School X X X X Social Acceptance X Parental Relationship X X X
Large positive impact on school connectedness for mentored elementary age boys,
Significant decrease for high school age boys.
High school girls had large gains in connectedness after being mentored.
School Settings Varied at Different Grade Levels
Elementary school matches had more freedom to move around the school, spent more time engaged in games and playful activities, and spent less time discussing youth problems such as grades or behavior.
High school matches spent their time in more confined spaces like the library or cafeteria, had less access to games and playtime, and spent much more time discussing “areas of improvement” for the mentee.
Sitting at a table in a high school cafeteria and talking with a boy about his problems in front of his peers is just not a good way to go. Dr. Michael Karcher
Cross-race matches necessary given the demographics of mentees and mentors in the United States
No strong evidence that same-race matches are generally more or less effective than cross-race ones
Cultural Mistrust, Cultural Sensitivity & Ethno-Cultural Empathy
When either mentors or mentees have high levels of cultural mistrust their cross-race relationships are less youth-centered, less close, less helpful to the youth in addressing his or her problems, and are generally less satisfying.
Matches with high levels of cultural sensitivity are more trusting and satisfying to both mentor and mentee.
High levels of ethno-cultural empathy predicted higher levels of relationship satisfaction and an increase in mentees seeking out support from their mentors.
The opportunity to have fun and a strong sense of trust are critical components to any match regardless of the age of the mentee
Each mentoring participant and relationship is unique. While mentoring does have commonly agreed-upon best practices, the diversity of its participants insists that one size does not ultimately fit all .
Garringer, Michael; MRC August 2008 Fact Sheet , National Mentoring Center, NWREL.