Expert Corner

Changes to Key Numbers in “The Mentoring Effect” Report

Changes to Key Numbers in “The Mentoring Effect” Report

by David DuBois This report as originally issued (Bruce & Bridgeland, 2014, see URL to current version of report below) included the conclusion that an estimated 4.5 million at-risk young people (ages 8-18) are currently in mentoring relationships. It turns out that this conclusion (as well as analogous ones made for not at risk youth, […]

Everyone needs a beta! Mentoring relationships in the fan fiction community

Everyone needs a beta! Mentoring relationships in the fan fiction community

by Sarah Schwartz As a part of the MacArthur Research Network on Connected Learning, I have been experiencing a steep learning curve when it comes to the potential of utilizing new technology and web-based platforms to facilitate learning and connection (as a psychologist, my focus has been primarily on face-to-face relationships). Recently I have been […]

Do mentoring pairs tend to meet less as their matches progress? : Evidence from an Irish study

Do mentoring pairs tend to meet less as their matches progress? : Evidence from an Irish study

by Bernadine Brady & Pat Dolan  Editors Note: We are delighted to include the perspectives of our colleagues in Irelan, Bernadine Brady and Pat Dolan. As they note, relationships tend to meet less frequently as time goes on. They pose an interesting question–which and ask for your perspective–what should programs’ response be to this trend?  […]

Forum

POLL: Does your program have a fully-developed theory of change?

POLL: Does your program have a fully-developed theory of change?

Recently I’ve been thinking about a “disconnect” that I often see in the mentoring field: the difference between what programs say they can achieve through mentoring and what they actually do in practice. Now, most mentoring programs can obviously give a reasonable description of the goals of their program and some explanation of what mentors […]

FORUM: How do you encourage mentors to support students academically?

FORUM: How do you encourage mentors to support students academically?

For the longest time, policymakers, school districts, and educators have been trying to figure out how to use the power of mentoring to support students academically. Early on, this led to mentoring programs that were “mentoring” in name, but heavy on tutoring or other direct academic support in terms of the actual activities volunteers and […]

FORUM: How will the new report on the “mentoring gap” help your efforts?

FORUM: How will the new report on the “mentoring gap” help your efforts?

Earlier this month, MENTOR released The Mentoring Effect: Young People’s Perspectives on the Outcomes and Availability of Mentoring (pdf file), a major contribution to our understanding of just how much of an impact mentors are having on the lives of America’s young people. You can read more about the report and its findings on the […]

New Mentoring Research

New study shows important pathway to mentor commitment

New study shows important pathway to mentor commitment

Gettings, P.E. & Wilson, S.R. (2014). Examining commitment and relational maintenance in formal youth mentoring relationships. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 1-27, DOI: 10.1177/0265407514522145. summarized by UMass Boston doctoral student, Stella Kanchewa, M.A. Background: Previous studies (e.g., Grossman et al. 2012; Grossman & Rhodes, 2002) have established the formation of an enduring relationship as […]

Caring adult support associated with youth “sparks”

Caring adult support associated with youth “sparks”

Ben-Eliyahu, A., Rhodes, J., & Scales, P. (in press). The interest-driven pursuits of 15-year-olds: “Sparks” and their association with caring relationships and developmental outcomes. Applied Developmental Science.   Summarized by Postdoctoral Fellow, Adar Ben-Eliyahu Problem: Researchers have characterized a spark as a “passion for a self-identified interest, skill or capacity that metaphorically lights a fire in […]

Research Underscores Importance of Mentor Training

Research Underscores Importance of Mentor Training

Martin, S.M., & Sifers, S.K., (2012). An evaluation of factors leading to mentor satisfaction with the mentoring relationship. Children and Youth Services Review, 34(5): 940-945. Problem Mentoring relationships seem to be most beneficial when mentors have ongoing support from the matching agency, ongoing training, and confidence in one’s mentoring abilities. The study’s authors investigated whether […]

Research From Related Fields

How an Innovative Youth Program is Tackling Mass Incarceration

How an Innovative Youth Program is Tackling Mass Incarceration

By DAX-DEVLON ROSS Nine years ago Molly Baldwin found herself in a curious position. Roca, the teenage pregnancy and violence prevention program she’d founded in her 20s, had a multimillion-dollar budget, a two-story building in downtown Chelsea, Mass., a portfolio of programs addressing everything from poverty to immigrant rights and a measure of fame for using Native […]

News Flash: Boys and Girls Take Different Paths to Empathy

News Flash: Boys and Girls Take Different Paths to Empathy

Van der Graaff, J., Branje, S., De Wied, M., Hawk, S., Van Lier, P. & Meeus, W. (2014). Perspective taking and empathic concern in adolescence: Gender differences in developmental changes. Developmental Psychology, (3), 881-888. doi: 10.1037/a0034325 By Tara Kuther Empathy, the capacity to take another person’s perspective and appreciate their emotion, is thought to increase over […]

Adolescents Prefer More Immediate Rewards When in the Presence of their Peers

Adolescents Prefer More Immediate Rewards When in the Presence of their Peers

 O’Brien, L., Albert, D., Chein, J., & Steinberg, L. (2011). Adolescents prefer more immediate rewards when in the presence of their peers. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 21(4), 747-753. Summarized by Carol Lee, University of Massachusetts Boston Clinical Psychology Graduate Student Introduction: Researchers have found that adolescents are more likely to engage in risky behaviors […]

Profiles in Mentoring

Pedro Noguera: Why students need more than ‘grit’

Pedro Noguera: Why students need more than ‘grit’

By Pedro A. Noguera and Anindya Kundu Recently, “grit” has received growing attention from educators and others as the critical ingredient to academic success. Given our nation’s admiration for the rugged individual, it is understandable why we choose to glorify guts and grit. However, it is less clear why the idea has become such a […]

An interview with Professors Greg Duncan and Richard Murnane

An interview with Professors Greg Duncan and Richard Murnane

Editor’s note: If you are interested in how poverty affects young people and their educational opportunities, I’d like recommend  Whither Opportunity? Rising Inequality, Schools, and Outcomes, edited by Greg Duncan (U.C.-Irvine) and Richard Murnane (Harvard University). This volume explores how rising inequality is compromising the capacity of public schools to provide our nation’s youth with opportunities for […]

An interview with Jane Pauley

An interview with Jane Pauley

Jane Pauley is an inspiration to the encore movement – and a leading light. A longtime Purpose Prize judge, she has been the abiding presence at our annual Purpose Prize event over the past three years. Now, in her compelling book, “Your Life Calling: Reimagining the Rest of Your Life”, Jane provides a vision for […]

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News & Resources

OJJDP releases new grant solicitations

OJJDP releases new grant solicitations

OJJDP continues to take the lead in funding ground breaking mentoring research and services. Below is a list of the most recent, a review that might be helpful in preparing applications.   Practitioner-Researcher Partnership Mentoring Children   Deadline: May 27, 2014 “This demonstration program will support a practitioner-researcher partnership to develop and evaluate new mentoring […]

April 17 webinar – Going the Distance: New Insights on Mentor Retention

April 17 webinar – Going the Distance: New Insights on Mentor Retention

Many mentoring programs invest significant time, energy and dollars identifying and attracting volunteers, only to find the return on this investment falls short when mentors leave programs – and their relationships with mentees – prematurely. What influences mentors to leave or stay in programs? How can we increase the odds that mentors will go the […]

Mentors Help Create A Sustainable Pipeline For Women In STEM

Mentors Help Create A Sustainable Pipeline For Women In STEM

by Bonnie Marcus Women make up about half of the workforce in America, but they only represent 24% of the workforce in STEM fields. Why should we care? First and foremost, this statistic calls attention to an untapped potential; talent that we need in science, technology, engineering and mathematics in order to remain competitive from […]