Opportunities to Engage:   Female Student-AthletesReflect on Mentors, Mentoring, and Community Involvement  Jennifer E. Br...
Origin of the Work Forwomen athletes, most noticeably young Black females (Bruening, 2004), lack of access to mentors lim...
Roles and Identity   Traditionally, roles have been viewed as the    behavioral expectations associated with, and    emer...
Ethic of Caring People are “often constituted in and through social relations and obligations to others. Selves and socie...
Design   The first study involved14 Black female student-athletes    who participated in 5 focus groups, then five took p...
March 29, 2013
March 29, 2013
March 29, 2013
March 29, 2013
Mentors Mentors have the unique ability to build self-esteem and social competence in youths by broadening their horizons...
Mentors Participants indicated that girls are more likely to be influenced by close personal contacts. It is the personal...
Mentors Thewomen   preferred “active” mentors rather than “passive” role models. Further, many of the women discussed bec...
Mentoring While investigations of the benefits for mentors are typically absent from the literature, particularly glaring...
Mentoring Serving as a mentor in a sport setting can assist college students in their personal identity. Students may not...
Mentoring Mentors‟ attraction to mentoring shifted from wanting to learn new leadership skills to being a part of somethi...
Mentoring Successful  mentoring relationships are possible when mentors understand the challenges of mentoring, have empa...
Community InvolvementA  combination of serving as a mentor while also participating in community service presents an oppo...
Community Involvement When   using sport as a catalyst along with female student-athlete mentors to develop relationships...
Community Involvement   Although the image of [an engaged citizen] was emphasized    by the basketball program at UNE, [C...
Implications   Although Title IX has provided more opportunities for    women to participate in collegiate sport, the eff...
Implications   Over time the students realized that, even without exams, the course was    challenging, “this class is no...
Implications   Many of the students evolved as educated    citizens through their efforts (Boyte, 2004), better    able t...
jennifer.bruening@uconn.eduwww.huskysport.uconn.edu    UConn Husky Sport    @UConnHuskySport                        March ...
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  • From first study
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  • Jennifer Bruening -- Ali center Forum

    1. 1. Opportunities to Engage: Female Student-AthletesReflect on Mentors, Mentoring, and Community Involvement Jennifer E. Bruening, University of Connecticut Brianna S. Clark, Temple University John F. Borland, Springfield College
    2. 2. Origin of the Work Forwomen athletes, most noticeably young Black females (Bruening, 2004), lack of access to mentors limits assistance finding ways to use sport as a means to achieve their life goals and provides little modeling on how to be a mentor themselves. March 29, 2013
    3. 3. Roles and Identity Traditionally, roles have been viewed as the behavioral expectations associated with, and emerging, from identifiable positions in social structures (Callero, 1985). These “social structures” of environment and agents “affect self and how self affects social behaviors” (Stryker & Burke, 2000, p 285). Identity theory: “Despite the freedom and agency that many actors feel in their lives, most have only limited influence over the organizations, institutions and associations within which they act” (Piliavin et al., 2002, p. 472). March 29, 2013
    4. 4. Ethic of Caring People are “often constituted in and through social relations and obligations to others. Selves and society [do] not seem to be separate entities; rather the boundaries were blurred” (Collins, 1991, p. 22). March 29, 2013
    5. 5. Design The first study involved14 Black female student-athletes who participated in 5 focus groups, then five took part in follow-up individual interviews reflecting on their experiences being mentored and expectations they have for themselves as mentors. Then, a second longitudinal study chronicled the experiences of 43 additional female student- athletes, both Black and White, who served as mentors in a university community engagement program. Ten women participated in 2 focus groups then 4 took part in follow-up individual interviews. The other 33 women shared their experiences through written reflections as part of a Service Learning class connect to the university community engagement program. March 29, 2013
    6. 6. March 29, 2013
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    10. 10. Mentors Mentors have the unique ability to build self-esteem and social competence in youths by broadening their horizons and can provide a bridge to the outside world by being mediators, active socializers, and filters of outside messages (Freedman, 1993). March 29, 2013
    11. 11. Mentors Participants indicated that girls are more likely to be influenced by close personal contacts. It is the personal connection that is crucial, influential others with which they could personally interact (Bruening, Borland, & Burton, 2008). March 29, 2013
    12. 12. Mentors Thewomen preferred “active” mentors rather than “passive” role models. Further, many of the women discussed becoming role models or mentors and talking to their communities about their sports participation. Many of these women did not have “active” mentors and if they did, they only had one. March 29, 2013
    13. 13. Mentoring While investigations of the benefits for mentors are typically absent from the literature, particularly glaring are the missing experiences of women mentors in sport (Clark, Bruening, & Madsen, in press). March 29, 2013
    14. 14. Mentoring Serving as a mentor in a sport setting can assist college students in their personal identity. Students may not immediately view themselves as mentors; however, the social experience of mentoring youth creates a possible self they may aspire to be (Clark, Bruening, & Madsen, in press). March 29, 2013
    15. 15. Mentoring Mentors‟ attraction to mentoring shifted from wanting to learn new leadership skills to being a part of something sport-based. This suggested that the role of sport was attractive to them and had a significant impact on volunteer experience. March 29, 2013
    16. 16. Mentoring Successful mentoring relationships are possible when mentors understand the challenges of mentoring, have empathy and understanding for the youth and their life situations, and are willing to invest energy over an extended period of time in order to build a strong relationship (Rhodes, 2002; Rhodes et al., 2002). March 29, 2013
    17. 17. Community InvolvementA combination of serving as a mentor while also participating in community service presents an opportunity for college students to expand their worldview while also developing a stronger personal identity (Rhodes, 2005; Yates & Youniss, 1996). March 29, 2013
    18. 18. Community Involvement When using sport as a catalyst along with female student-athlete mentors to develop relationships, female urban youth participants gained a greater sense of self, had a greater appreciation and understanding of their health, and gained feelings of belonging to a community (Bruening, Clark & Dover, 2009). March 29, 2013
    19. 19. Community Involvement Although the image of [an engaged citizen] was emphasized by the basketball program at UNE, [Charlotte] felt it was fair to expect [of] all athletes . . . and stated, “People say it‟s not fair that I should have to do this…but…there‟s a certain way you‟re supposed to act anyway…. And I hate that excuse, when people say „well I didn‟t ask to be a role model‟…” Jane also felt similarly about athletes being [engaged] even though her crew team did not receive the publicity and fan support of UNE basketball. She stated, “I think just as an athlete you are automatically assumed to be the top…just by association. You‟re respected… by your peers…coaches and even teachers.” Regardless of the type of sport, Jane believed it was fair to expect all athletes to be [engaged in March 29, 2013 the community].
    20. 20. Implications Although Title IX has provided more opportunities for women to participate in collegiate sport, the effects of the legislation have not been felt uniformly by all women. White women have enjoyed widespread participation across a variety of sports whereas the participation of African American women has been limited to a few sports. More research regarding the lack of sport opportunities for young, Black female athletes must be conducted at the youth level to understand the state and local governmental policies that have contributed to this phenomenon and the lack of positive influence by outsiders to break this phenomenon. Community involvement around sport “provides a two March 29, 2013 way benefit” (Eley & Kirk, 2002, p. 165).
    21. 21. Implications Over time the students realized that, even without exams, the course was challenging, “this class is no joke” (Undergraduate Student). They came to find that “academically this class was a completely different atmosphere than [they] have ever participated in” (Undergraduate Student). The key to this transition is when the students identify how this is one of the few classes they have taken where “the readings could be related to what was actually happening in [their lives] (Undergraduate Student). While all instructors involved in the course would attest to the difficulty in actually having students articulate these relationships between readings and life experience in their writing and discussions, the researchers realized this was a step outside the comfort zone of many as well. The emotional nature of revealing one‟s own views, the process of challenging some of those views, and critically examining where one comes from is a struggle. However, once students are able to make the connections between academic content and their lives, their learning becomes long lasting (Markus, et al., 1993), extending past the time they are enrolled in the course. March 29, 2013
    22. 22. Implications Many of the students evolved as educated citizens through their efforts (Boyte, 2004), better able to function in larger society beyond their major and beyond the university environment. As a result, they were able to expand their networks to include individuals of diverse cultures. Consequently, as the college students were able to gain valuable experience serving as mentors to individuals of diverse cultures from the community, they might be better equipped, and more likely, to go on to serve as mentors to individuals of diverse cultures in the workplace. March 29, 2013
    23. 23. jennifer.bruening@uconn.eduwww.huskysport.uconn.edu UConn Husky Sport @UConnHuskySport March 29, 2013

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