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1 ADOLESCENT PERSPECTI VES ON THE FUNCTIONI NG MENTOR ROLE By TIFFANY MORROW A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF SCIENCE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2013
2 2013 Tiffany Morrow
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS From every fiber of my being I outpour gratitude and thanks to my Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him alo ne was I given the mental stamina to complete this thesis. I thank my Mom and Dad for their unconditional support and guidance, from my birth to present. Lastly, I thank my committee members: Jerry Culen Rose Barnett, and Nicole Stedman; and the CYFAR tea m for autonomy and endorsement throughout the research process.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 8 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 9 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 10 CHAPTER 1. INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 12 Background ................................ ................................ ................................ ............. 12 Rationale of Study ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 15 Purpose of Study ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 16 Research Questions ................................ ................................ ............................... 17 Research Hypothesis ................................ ................................ .............................. 17 Definitions ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 19 Significance of Study ................................ ................................ .............................. 20 Assumptions of the Study ................................ ................................ ....................... 21 2. LITERATURE REVIEW ................................ ................................ ............................. 23 Primary Caregiver Youth Relationships ................................ ................................ .. 23 Attachment Theory ................................ ................................ ........................... 23 Social Learning Theory ................................ ................................ ..................... 26 Social Support Theory ................................ ................................ ...................... 31 Compensatory vs. Complementary ................................ ................................ ......... 34 Mentor Youth Relationships ................................ ................................ .................... 37 Duration ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 39 Intensity ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 40 Quality ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 42 Formal vs. Informal Mentoring ................................ ................................ ................ 42 The Afterschool Setting ................................ ................................ ........................... 44 Gender and Mentoring Among At risk Populations ................................ ................. 45 Importance of Adolescent Perceptions ................................ ................................ ... 47 3. METHODOLOGY ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 51 Research Design ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 51 Population ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 52 Data Collection ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 54 Interview Protocol ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 54 Procedure ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 57
6 Data Analysis ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 59 Limitations of the Study ................................ ................................ ........................... 61 4. RESULTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 64 Demographic Data ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 64 Organization of Data ................................ ................................ ............................... 64 S ummary of Findings ................................ ................................ .............................. 67 Function of a Mentor ................................ ................................ ........................ 67 Primary Source of Guidance ................................ ................................ ............ 68 Primary Source of Support ................................ ................................ ............... 70 Primary Source of Identity ................................ ................................ ................ 71 Primary Caregiver Relationship ................................ ................................ ........ 72 Mentor Relationship ................................ ................................ ......................... 73 Comparing Mentor to Primary Caregiver ................................ .......................... 75 Conclusion ................................ ................................ ................................ .............. 76 5. DISCUSSION ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 80 Overview ................................ ................................ ................................ ................. 80 Conceptual Model ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 81 Mutuality, Trust, Empathy ................................ ................................ ................. 82 Parental Moderators ................................ ................................ ......................... 82 Mentor Moderators ................................ ................................ ........................... 85 Needs for Socialization ................................ ................................ ..................... 87 Cognitive development ................................ ................................ .............. 88 Social emotional developmen t ................................ ................................ ... 91 Identity development ................................ ................................ .................. 9 3 Youth Outcomes ................................ ................................ ............................... 94 Implications for Practice and Recommendations ................................ .................... 95 Future Directions for Research ................................ ................................ ............... 98 APPENDIX A. LOGIC CHART ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 101 B. INTERVIEW PROTOCOL ................................ ................................ ....................... 114 C. SUBJECTIVITY STATEMENT ................................ ................................ ................ 116 D. IRB APPROVAL ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 118 E. PARENTAL CONSENT FORM ................................ ................................ ............... 122 F. INFORMED CONSENT FORM ................................ ................................ ............... 124 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 125
7 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 138
8 LIST OF TABLES Table page 4 1 Demographics ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 77 4 2 Assessment of Variables ................................ ................................ .................... 78 4 3 Results Table ................................ ................................ ................................ ...... 79
9 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 1 1 Predictions of Study. ................................ ................................ ........................... 22 2 1 Model of Youth Mentoring (Rhodes, 2005). ................................ ........................ 49 2 2 Mentoring in After school Setting (Adapted from Rhodes, 2005). ....................... 50 5 1 Adolescent Mentoring. Adapted from Model of Youth Mentoring (Rhodes, 2005). ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 100
10 Abstract of Th esis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science ADOLESCENT PERSPECTIVES ON THE FUNCTIONING MENTOR ROLE By Tiffany Morrow M ay 2013 Chair: Je rry Culen Major: Family Youth and Community Sciences Mentoring is a growing intervention strategy for at risk adolescent. Yet, how influential is mentoring in the development of at risk youth? The inquiry fueling this study was to determine whether adoles cents perceive their mentors as complementary or compensatory to their primary caregiver regarding adolescent socialization. The findings of this study can inform current mentoring purposes and practices towards more advantageous methods of intervention fo r at risk youth. Participants were 29 at risk adolescents who completed semi structured interviews examining the level of influence their mentor and primary caregiver had on their socialization. Interviews were transcribed then analyzed using an inductive content analysis, which involved a systematic reading of interviews and analytic coding procedures (Patton, 2002; Weber, 1990). Results indicated that adolescents perceived their mentor (1) was complementary to their primary caregiver and (2) less impactf ul than the primary caregiver in multiple domains of socialization. The study also revealed that the mentor was more influential on adolescent socialization when (1) the duration of the mentor relationship was longer, (2) the intensity of the mentor relati onship was higher, and (3) when the mentor and primary caregiver were in relationship with each other. These
11 results are discussed pertaining to implications for mentoring program and practice improvements and f uture directions of research.
12 CHAPTER 1 INT RODUCTION Background Historically parents have been the primary figures responsible for socializing and rearing children to be contributing and positive members of society (Larson & Richards, 1994; Masten, 1994; Parke & Buriel, 1998 ; Scales & Gibbons, 1996 ). A plethora of research exists on the functions parents have on the socialization and development of children and adolescents (Foster Clark, 2003; Hendry et al., 1992). As Social Learning Theory posits, children learn behaviors primarily by observing and then imitating the behaviors of others (Learning Theories Knowledgebase, 2011). The more a child is exposed to certain traits, behaviors and mentalities the more likely that child will learn and perpetuate those traits, behaviors and mentalities (Snyder e t al, 2003). Researchers have been in agreement that parents (or primary care givers) are the most Heilbrun, 1965; Sopchak, 1952). According to Social Learning Theory (Band ura, 1969) this is a result of consistent exposure and contact with their parental counterparts, who demonstrate and teach children how to behave. Attachment Theory (Bowlby, 1969) also explains aspects of behavior formation through the strong and complex parent child relationship. Social Support Theory (Heller et al., 1986) further expounds on the significant role that a strong adult bond has on the development of and resiliency of adolescents. As society has shifted in numerous dimensions, the role of chi ld socialization has moved from primarily parent s duty to a shared role with day care workers, teachers and other community members. As this responsibility of socialization has been increasingly
13 shared, adolescents are seemingly less exposed to one on one adult interaction and chi ld bond is not emulated in these temporary adult child interactions. Therefore, the necessary affects that accompany a strong and secure adult attachment are lacking for many adolescents. The settings in which children are expected to develop and learn app ropriate behaviors have become less intimate and personal. Children and adolescents are then provided insufficient adult bonds, which impeded maturation (Rice, 1990). Nightingale and Wolverton (1993) reported at Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development, consistent in showing that countless damaging repercussions result from lack of adult attachments and supervision (Flannery et al., 1999 ; Pe tit, Bates, Dodge & Meece, 1999 ). Social Learning Theory and Social Support Theory both theoretically guide these attributed to the absenc e of consistent interactions with positive adults (Hurd et al, 2011). Youth delinquency can be attributed to adolescents primarily being exposed to negative behaviors, of which they imitate. This was supported in the research of Miller and Donald (1941), who found that if negative and risky behaviors are demonstrated to and around adolescents on a frequent basis, they will mimic such behaviors. More recent research (Rivara, Sweeney, and Henderson,1987; Bandura, 1986; Huesmann,
14 1988; Anderson, 1990; Bell & Jenkins, 1993; Greenberger, Chen, & Beam, 1998; Zimmerman, Steinman, & Rowe, 1998; Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Synder et al., 2003; Hurd et al., 2011) has provided further empirical support that youth delinquency is strongly associated with adolescents being exposed to negative behaviors, of which they imitate. In disadvantaged communities, the occurrence of violence, antisocial, and destructive behaviors has been far more prevalent, which has resulted in exposed adolescents learning and acclimating such val ues, behaviors and norms (Bell & Jenkins, 1993). Negative behaviors demonstrated by adults have fostered adolescents to engage in the same behaviors. When adolescents then grow into adults, they perpetuate the same behaviors to the next generation (Zimmerm an, Steinman, & Rowe, 1998, Hurd et al, 2011). Proper socialization requires exposure to positive and constructive behaviors, yet research has continued to demonstrate a decrease in the availability and exposure of positive adult role models and support in the lives of adolescents (Grossman & Tierney, 1998; Putnam, 2000; Rhodes, 2002). If natural positive role models do not exist in the community, then adolescents need to be directed elsewhere to find positive adult relationships to guide their maturation. Yet, the question arises, even if positive role models are provided, will their presence trump the negative factors surrounding the adolescents? In aims to ameliorate the lack of positive role models, mentoring has been a widely implemented intervention. T his study sought to further understand the role mentoring plays in adolescent development, specifically in c omparison to the parental bond.
15 Rationale of Study Based on the 2010 National Survey of School Violence and Discipline, 74 % of schools in the U.S. experienced violent incidents, defined by the frequency of incidents, such as physical attacks, robberies, and thefts in the school. Then, 26 % of schools reported having problems with distribution, possession and use of illegal drugs and 14 % problems wit h the distribution of, possession, and use of alcohol while at school (U.S. Dept of Education, 2010). Whereas in 1990, 23 % of U.S. schools reported problems with students physically fighting, 6 % reported problems of student drug use while at school and 1 0 % had problems with student alcohol use (U.S. Dept of Education, 1996). Within a twenty year period the frequency of youth violence in schools drastically increased. However, it was in 1972 that youth violence in schools had risen to a point of receiving federal recognition and intervention (Jaslow, 1978). Thus youth violence and poor behavioral conduct has been on the incline for at least the past forty years. Interventions have been initiated in attempt to temper and eradicate this growing problem. How ever, although many such programs exist, negative behaviors among at risk adolescents are continuing to increase (Dryfoos, 1990). With the growth of research related to this topic, scholars and practioners have documented the large contribution that a lack of parental or adult influence and support play into the increase of youth delinquency (Flannery, Williams & Vazsonyi, 1999; Galambos & Maggs, 1991; Goldstein, David Kean & Eccles, 2005; Hurd et al, 2011 ; Mahoney & Stattin, 2000; McHale, Crouter, & Tucker 2001; Pet tit, Bates, Dodge & Meece, 1999 ). As a result, community organizations and educational systems have more recently established a number of relationship based intervention programs designed to improve the academic, behavioral and mental struggles underprivileged adolescents face. Examples of these
16 types of programs are Big Brother Big Sister, Friends of Children, Mentoring USA, etc. The common goal of these programs can be summarized as seeking to ameliorate negative behaviors among adolescents an d promote positive maturation into contributing members of society, through the implementation of a supportive and supportive and exemplary adult relationship in expose the adolescent positive behaviors. Thus, then impacting the behaviors the behaviors, by providing role models and connec tions to community resources. Research consistently demonstrates measureable improvements on youth delinquency, mental well being, academic success, and positive life outcomes for adolescents who have a positive mentor (Catalano et al, 2004; Grossman & Rho des, 2002). As these programs become more prevalent, research continues to further examine the best practices associated with mentoring and positive role modeling with adolescents. One particular area of concern that has not been addressed is the perspect ive adolescents have on their mentors in comparison to their parents, as to who is most influential in shaping their behaviors and life trajectory. This study will examine how individual adolescents perceive the role of their mentor in comparison to their development. Purpose of Study The purpose of this study wa s to explore the perspectives of adolescents in regards to the relationship between their mentors and their pr imary attachment (primary caregiver). The study seeks to determine if adolescents perceive the mentor as serving
17 as complementary or compensatory to their primary attachment. Specifically, this study will examine the mentoring relationship in afterschool s ettings. Research Questions #1: How do at risk adolescents with mentors in afterschool settings perceive the function of their relationship with mentors in relation to their primary caregiver? Do at risk adolescents perceive their mentor relationships as serving a compensatory (compensate for absence of strong primary attachment) or complementary (in addition to a strong primary attachment) function? #2: How do at risk adolescents with mentors in community settings perceive the function of their relations hip with mentors in relation to their primary caregiver? Is their mentor relationship perceived as compensatory or complementary ? These research questions are essentially seeking to understand how adolescents perceive their mentoring relationship in spec ific reference to compensatory or complementary functions with relation to their primary caregiver. The intent of two different research questions was not comparative, but rather to include both the afterschool and community settings in the research. Compe nsatory functions can be described as substituting for a poor primary attachment and bearing stronger impacts on the behaviors and life trajectory of the youth. Complementary functions refer to a mentor whose effects are merely additional and secondary to influence. Research Hypothesis A case study often does not employ a hypothesis because the design is based inductive by nature, a hypothesis would be r estrictive and would limit or steer the
18 Jones, 2003; Hammersley, 1992). Rather, this study will suggest a proposition based on the literature review. This proposition will reflect the reasons why certain v ariables (e.g. duration, intensity and quality of the mentoring relationship and the strength of primary attachments) will provide insight on the effects of mentoring as perceived by adolescents. Due to the nature of the research questions and the researc h design of this study, comparison groups cannot be determined beforehand. However, groups will evolve as the data are gathered and analyzed. It is predicted that the groups that will of their highlight which individual(s) most shape their behaviors and life trajectory. Despite the plethora of research on mentoring, limited research exists pertaining to ado caregiver. Based on the literature, this research study posits that adolescents who have a stronger primary attachment will characterize a mentor as a complementary figure, whe reas the adolescents who have a weak primary attachment will characterize a mentor as a compensatory figure. Furthermore, adolescents who report a higher quality relationship with their mentor will be more likely to attribute the mentor to a compensatory f igure. Whereas, those who report low levels of quality in their mentoring relationship will be more likely to perceive their mentor as a complementary figure in relation to their primary caregiver (Figure 1 1 ). The quality of the mentoring relationship (fu rther described in C hapter 2) is as defined by the current research (Dubois et al.,
19 2002; Grossman & Rhodes, 2002; Herrerra et al., 2000; Langhout et al., 2004 ; Morrow & Styles, 1992; Rhodes, R eddy, Roffman, & Grossman, 2005 ). All of the data collected wer e qualitative, and therefore, no statistical hypothesis or data were included in this study. This study employed a method of qualitative data collection in the form of semi structured interviews. Although the Youth Mentor Relationship Quality Inventory and the Parent Child Attachment Surveys are widely used and proven reliable measures (Folan & Britner, 2009; George & Solomon, 1999; Little, Kearney & Britner, 2010; Rhodes et al., 2005; Robinson et al. 1996; Turner, 2005 ; Zand et al., 2009 ), it was determine d a more comprehensive and in depth answer could be generated from the adolescents through qualitative data. Open ended interview Definitions A DOLESCENCE ourse between the time puberty begins and the time adult status is approached, when young people are preparing to take on A DOLESCENTS For the purpose of this study, youth are ad olescents between the ages of 11 and 18, which is conducive with the ages Erikson (1950) used to A FTER S CHOOL P ROGRAM development programming that occurs beyond the school day, including before Network, 2010). A T RISK Y OUTH Youth who are predisposed to juvenile delinquency, school dropout, teen pregnancy, drug abuse and personality disorders (Tidwell & Garrett, 1994). C OMPENSATORY A functional role of the mentor that is characterized by compensating adult resources or support unavailable to the protg (Erickson, McDonald, & Elder, 2009).
20 C OMPLEMENTARY A functional role of the me ntor that is characterized by providing additional resources and support to that which the protg already has readily available (Erickson, McDonald & Elder, 2009). M EN TOR Mentor was defined as any non parental adult that takes a special interest in the life of a youth and step outside their normal social roles to serve as a role model. (Erickson, McDonald, & Elder, 2009). The mentor typically provides and over time develops a u nique bond with the protg that is characterized by support, trust, empathy and mutuality (Bronfrenbrenner, 1988; Freedman, 1988; Rhodes, et al., 2006). F ORMAL MEN TOR A mentor that is pre arranged and pre assigned to one or more rogram or organization (Erickson, McDonald & Elder, 2009). I NFORMAL MENTOR & Elder, 2009). P RIMARY ATTACHMENT T he attachment a child forms with their primary caregiver on which they build an "internal working model" (Bowlby, 1969, 1982) that provides a "set of conscious and/or unconscious rules for the organization of information relevant to attachments" and expect ations about other relationships (Main et al., 1985). Used interchangeably with parental bond and primary bond or attachment. Significance of Study The emerging intervention strategy of mentoring is growing rapidly. Yet, there exist gaps in the research p ertaining to various dimensions of the mentoring relationship and its effects on adolescents. Furthermore, the current research on mentoring has produced inconsistent results, posing the need for more concrete findings on the effects of mentoring and the b est practices in mentoring ( Dubois et al., 201; Keating et al., 2002 ). This study will add to the existing body of knowledge regarding mentoring and its relationship to youth development. As the research on mentoring grows, there is a need for more robust explanations on the unique dynamics of mentoring. This study incorporates multiple
21 models and theories to better understand and describe the dynamics of mentoring as This study recognizes that all aspects of youth development contemporaneously tedious and difficult in the context of one study. However, this research does seek to merge different theories and models of influence to build a more comprehensive understanding of the role mentoring plays in youth development. This study integrated mod els of differing theories, as they overlapped and significantly contributed to understanding and answering the research questions listed above. In doing so, this study further enhanced the explanatory power of Attachment Theory, Social Learning Theory and Social Support Theory. This study not only expanded the body of research pertaining to mentoring but also examined un explored gaps in the research. Research on adolescent development as well as research examining theoretical implications and evidence base d practices in mentoring would benefit from the findings of this study. Assumptions of the Study This study assumed that the adolescents who participated in the study had at least one adult with whom they identified as a mentor, either in the afterschool program or in the community. This study also assumed that the adolescents that participated had a primary caregiver.
22 Figure 1 1. Predictions of Study
23 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW As researchers and practioners have be for strong adult relationships, relationship based interventions, such as mentoring, have become popular strategies. Yet, as Erickson and colleagues (2009) stated, the effects of mentoring are often studied and assesse d independent of other resources available to and impacting adolescents. By viewing mentoring relationships within the broader context of youth development researchers can better gauge the role mentoring serves and how it fits into that existing social con text. Primary Caregiver Youth Relationships Attachment Theory Attachment Theory pioneered an understanding of the unique bond created between infant and primary caregiver (often parent) and its transference into childhood and adolescence. Bowlby (1969) pr oposed that human beings have an innate mechanism that immediately bonds them to an attachment figure that provides them from this first attachment, babies learn how t o form all other attachments (Bowlby, 2007). Furthermore, Secure attachment relations, perhaps by supporting exploration and mastery of the environment, [predict] adjustment in several areas of functioning, such as cognitive development, academic skills, emotional development, and interpersonal or s ocial functioning. (Rice, 1990) socialization.
24 The primary attachment is either an insecure or secure attachment. A secure attac unreliable source of support (Bowlby, 2007, p. 309; Rice, 1990). Neurologically, an right side of the brain, which controls emotional and relational skills and intuition, devel ops an insecure attachment delays and sometimes retards growth (Bowlby, 2007). The developmental delays carry on into childhood specifically pertaining to personality m ental and emotional problems (Schore, 1994; Maughan, Collishaw, Goodman, & Pickles, 2004). When a secure attachment is absent or withheld from a child, he/she begins to adapt dissociative behaviors to stall or de activate the natural attachment seeking mec hanism, which prevents them from seeking other attachments and is often accompanied by antisocial behaviors (Bowlby, 2007). The primary attachment is also Blustein, 1994; Scott, et al., 2011). The main determinant of the personality and identity of a child is his/her primary attachment (Scott, et al., 2011). Bowlby (1969) also mentioned the occurrence of secondary attachments. In the absence of a primary attachment figure, a secure secondary attachment can buffer the consequent negative effects. Secondary attachments form with adults whom the child sees frequently and who are invested emotionally in the child, such as a grandmother or
25 nanny. Research has shown that the more secure secondary attachments a child forms the better his/her mental well being and resiliency (Bowlby, 2007). Both the primary and secondary attachments of a child and the experiences (positive or negative) that accompany those relationships form a cog nitive schema, & Laursen, 1999; Hesse, 1999). Mentoring attempts to provide a secure secondary attachment figure, which may, potentially and ideally, serve as a co rrective measure against negative internalizations made by an insecure attachment (Rhodes, 2005). As children move into adolescence, the main indicator of a secure parental attachment is adult supervision and monitoring (Patterson, 1986; Steinberg, 2001). Research on parental attachment has found that children who have strong attachments with their parents, in that they spend a significant amount of time with their parents, are less likely to engage in delinquent acts and have better mental and emotional h ealth (Hirschi,1969; Loeber and Dishion, 1983 ; Simourd and Andrews, 1994; Belsky & Cassidy, 1994; Bretherton, 1985; Parke & Buriel, 1998; Cotterell, 1992; Taylor, 1994). Research has also shown that adolescents who spend time with their parents have better grades, lower absenteeism, and greater school involvement than youth who spend less time with their parents (Csikszentmihalyi & Larson, 1984). In addition to parental monitoring as the strongest preventer of youth delinquency, a strong parental attachment presence. The psychological presence of a parent deters adolescents from engaging in delinquent acts, even when the parent is not physically present (Hirschi, 1969; Gault
26 Sherman, 2011). Evidently, a secure primary attachment has the most impact on Sampson and Laub (1993) put forth a theoretical model combining Attachment Theory, with other predominant youth delinquency theori es. They demonstrated that attachment, supervision and discipline were the three main dimensions that link children to family and integrate them into society. These three dimensions must work in conjunction with the others to optimally promote the positive development of adolescents and create productive members of society. However, presently in America, unemployed married mothers on average spend 3.6 hours daily with their children, while employed married mothers spend 1.8 hours daily with their children ( Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2010). The same survey reported that employed married men spent a total of 24 67 minutes on average with their children daily, whereas unemployed men were reported to having spent a total of 24 85 minutes with their children. So cietal trends demonstrate simultaneously an increase in juvenile delinquency and a decrease in secure parental attachment and parental supervision. Social Learning Theory Understanding Attachment Theory provides insight to the initial roots of adolescent also indentifies where adolescents begin to formulate their identity and how identity is linked to behavior. Social Learning Theory further expounds upon this link. Social Learning Th eory studies the process of how and why children and adolescents take ownership of and demonstrate the values, attitudes and behaviors of the environment in which they are raised (Bandura, 1969; Grusec, 1992). Bandura (1969) proposed that children learn be haviors primarily by observing and then imitating the behaviors of
27 others. When a secure bond exists between parent and child, children begin to emulate the behaviors, mentalities and attitudes of their parents (Bandura, 1969). Within this theoretical fr amework, the mechanisms of learning are directly related to environmental influences upon an individual. Erickson (1968) found that during adolescence children look up to the adults in their community, including parents. From scents formulate acceptable and appropriate behaviors and attitudes. Similarly, Bandura (1969) and subsequent researchers (Anderson, 1990; Bell & Jenkins, 1993; Freedman, 1993; Greenberger et al., 1998; Huesmann, 1988; Hurd et al., 2011 ; Rhodes, 1994; Synd er et al., 2003;Zi mmerman, Steinman, & Rowe, 1998 ) posited that adolescents are most likely to imitate the behaviors and attitudes most frequently demonstrated to them. Thus, the absence of a secure adult attachment and positive role models can lead adole scents into negative modes of influence. Piaget (1932) and Vygotsky (1978) knowledge, language, social problem solving skills, and moral behavior of adolescents. And yet, the l ack of adult interaction creates an environment in which adolescents are socialized by their peers. Anthropologist Margaret Mead (Schwartz, 1980) described this phenomenon as a co figurative culture in which learning and socialization are horizontal rathe r than vertical. Such socialization cultures emerge when older generations do not impart their maturity or wisdom to develop the younger generations. Rather, adolescents acquire morals and values and behaviors based on their peer he differential socialization opportunities in horizontal (peer) versus vertical (adult) interpersonal contexts has been especially influential in the
28 contexts for adoles cents often lack life experience and wisdom, and cannot understand abstract moral concepts or skills necessary for maturation and socialization into positive and contributing members of society (DeVries, 2004; Schwartz, 1980). The horizontal versus vertica l socialization culture is noteworthy because its root cause stems back to a lack of a positive and secure primary attachment. figurative culture, a study by Montemayor and Van Komen (1980) empirically demonstrated the wid espread prevalence of age segregation in American society, in which adults and adolescents pursue and exist in separate cultures. To further understand the implication of a separate youth culture, Anderson (1990) collectively examined the cultural dynamics of neighborhoods. He courage, and in effect, socialize young men to meet their responsibilities with regard to work, ethic, family life, the law influence of old head figures has declined, ranging from shifts in societal structure to the p. 70). Freedman (1988) found that intense intergenerational relationships were absent from social programs for at risk youth. The adolescents he interviewed expressed their need for relationship and interaction with adults who had been the most crucial
29 ingredient in developing their life skills and psychological and social maturity. Freedman how mentors could intentionally promote youth development by conveying knowl edge, vertical culture of learning and socialization. In congruence with Social Support Theory, the adolescents reported that close relationships with an adult was the key factor in evading negative life outcomes and bolstering their ability to engage in positive relationships with other adults (Freedman, 1988). This discovery became a forerunner sonal isolation from adult attention and moral isolation from pro social adult influences (Freedman, 1993). The isolated factors that have caused this wedge between the generations include the breakdown of the nuclear family and the erosion of neighborhood comradery. This study pertained to at risk youth, primarily low income and of African American descent. The research conducted with this particular population discovered that adolescents in disadvantaged inner city communities have fewer adults whom they can depend upon for guidance and positive role models (Newman, 2000). Boyle and Hassett Walker (2008) found that neighborhoods with higher levels of unemployment and poverty experienced higher levels of crime and social disorder. Additionally, Anderson (1 990) found that in economically disadvantaged neighborhoods, violence is seen as a means of gaining power, status and respect. Consequently, adolescents in these neighborhoods are exposed to a higher frequency of negative adult behaviors and adult violence Deductively, if adolescents are exposed to negative behaviors during the
30 crucial stage of formulating their identity and assessing appropriate behaviors, they are more likely to themselves engage in negative behaviors and formulate attitudes of acceptanc e towards negative behaviors. This phenomenon is empirically supported by Greenberger (2003) and Hurd (2011), whose studies demonstrated the direct effect and implications that the observation of negative behaviors had on adolescents own acquisition of tho se behaviors and attitudes. Both studies found that role model behavior. Adolescents in disadvantaged communities are more severely affected by this deterioration of adult yout h relationships. While affluent families can somewhat temper adolescents generational isolation with programs or therapy, underprivileged adolescents do not have those resources available. Furthermore, the adolescents in disadvantaged neighborhoods are mor e likely to witness violence, anti social behaviors and undergo high stress situations (Freedman, 1993). These traumatizing experiences, while creating additional need for support, simultaneously make it more difficult for many disadvantaged youth to accep t or attract the assistance they need. At the same time, poverty works in multiple and reinforcing ways to cu t off sources of potential help. (Freedman, 1993) Poverty can be a potential cause of further isolation from primary attachment figures because pa rents are working longer hours to provide for their family, leaving adolescents unsupervised, as indicated by the U.S. Department of Education (1988). However, research evaluating the factors that deter at risk adolescents from engaging in negative behavi ors and rather promote positive life outcomes found that a supportive adult relationship was the most influential (Lefkowitz, 1986). Werner & Smith (1982), who conducted a 30 year study of 700 at risk adolescents, found that all of the
31 adolescents who succ eeded in life goals had a supportive adult involved in their lives in addition to their parents. Other studies also found that at successful, in that they evaded jail and welfare or unemployment, had supportive adults/mentors while growing up (Anderson, 19 91; Williams and Kornblum, 1985). Beier and colleagues (2000) found that adolescents who had natural or informal mentors were significantly less likely to participate in violence and other problem behaviors than adolescents wi thout a mentor. Adolescents in low income urban communities with informal mentors reported more positive attitudes toward school, less involvement in alcohol and marijuana use, and fewer delinquent behaviors (Zimmerman et al, 2002). Another study evaluated the effects of mentoring on school violence, drug and alcohol use, and teen parenthood. The results indicated a significant decrease in these behaviors when the adolescents had a mentor (Jekielek et al, 2002). In accordance with this growing body of rese arch highlighting the importance of a and community programs have increasingly implemented relationship based intervention programs, such as mentoring. Mentoring provide s the modeling of positive and constructive behaviors. As indicated above, many behavior improvements have been linked with mentoring programs. Social Support Theory Primary attachment figures are not only responsible for the socialization of adolescents but are also a source of support and other various forms of capital for adolescents. Social Support Theory explains the functions of a supportive network for individuals. Supportive figures in the lives of adolescents serve socialization functions and pro tective functions.
32 Supportive figures engage adolescents in supportive relationships, which social interactions (Heller et al, 1986). There is overlap between Social Learn ing Theory be haviors. Social Support Theory contains two summative constructs: perception of available support and actual received support. Perceived support influences ones evaluation of self and others, which then impacts ones identity, self esteem and choices of beh aviors (Lakely & Cohen, 2000). The actual received support is the tangible resources (e.g. knowledge, skills, and money) and/or the physical presence of a person providing safety and security. Social Support Theory emphasizes the role social networks pla y in the paradigm shift from risk to resilience in an adolescent. Research in this field suggests that resiliency is heavily dependent upon an relational network and support system (Butler, 1997). One study, in particular, demonstrated that re siliency was directly related to the perceived safety and support of a significant individual within the the most significant factors in the resilience of at risk youth found that the most influential factor was a strong relationship with a competent, caring, and motivating adult (Masten et al., 1990, Masten, 1994). This presence of a supportive adult relationship was significantly influential in adolescents acquiring and utilizing resiliency skills (Masten & Coatsworth, 1998).
33 A reoccurring theme in Social Support research is the positive correlation overcome adversity, engage in positive be haviors, improve academic achievement and decrease delinquent behaviors (Garmezy, 1993; Luthar et al, 2000; Steinberg, 2001). These behavioral results are characteristics of a positive future orientation. Supportive adult relationships, therefore, foster positive future orientation in adolescents, which is an aspect of socialization (Broomfield, 2007). On the contrary, when the presence of a strong primary attachment is lacking, adolescents report having less social support and are more withdrawn, inattent ive, are harmful to others and have a negative future orientation (Kashini, Reid & Rosenberg, 1989). The primary attachment figure, ideally, acts as a supportive figure that buffers fe. Furthermore, the attachment between the primary caregiver and the adolescent provides the adolescent with a foundation, or schema, for future social relationships. Res earch has indicated that the presence of a secure attachment with a positive adult is the most influential of all factors in the positive maturation of adolescents. Social Support Theory, Social Learning Theory and Attachment Theory emphasize the monumenta l influence the primary attachment figure plays in the development of an adolescent. These influences include: socialization, protection and security, emotional, informational and practical skills, modeling of behaviors and attitudes, and a relational sche ma. When a primary caregiver is not fulfilling these roles/needs, adolescents are more likely to engage in negative behaviors and fail to assume an active and
34 contributing member of society. Thus, through an understanding of the importance of these needs i n the life of an adolescent, society has developed interventions and social programs to help compensate for the lack thereof. One of which is mentoring. Mentors provide adolescents with a social network, support and protection on various levels. The social development (Keating, et al., 2002). Compensatory vs. Complementary Research suggests that there are significant overlaps between the role of a primary caregiver and the role of m (2008) compared and contrasted the roles of different types of caregivers and role models, including mentors. The researchers indicated that mentors have the unique ability to take on several aspects of ea ch role, while still maintaining the flexibility to not be constrained to a single role. Cavell and colleagues (2002) suggested that when the mentor could fill a uniq ue role that has the attributes of both parents and friends. Gilligan (1999) suggested that mentors fill a role somewhere between a family member and a professional caregiver. Some studies have demonstrated the similarities between mentors and parents in that adolescents also view their mentor as a role model, imitate their behaviors and strive to attain the status of their mentor (Keller, 2005; Rhodes et at, 2006; Yancey, parental role. For example both are expected to teach adolescents knowledge, values, skills and provide them with a basis for and a better understanding of their identity, self esteem and competency (Hirsch, Mickus & Boeger, 2002; LoSciuto, Rajala, Townse d &
35 Taylor, 1996; etc). Gilligan (1999) outlined four specific behaviors that mentors emulate: rights and protecting him or her from negative influences), compensating ( offsetting deficits of inadequate parenthood) and preparation (teaching techniques and knowledge). These behaviors overlap with parental functions. Furthermore, both mentor bonds and parental bonds possess qualities of warmth, caring, support and trust (H amilton & Darling, 1989 ; Rhodes et al, 2006 ). The main difference that has existed between parents and mentors was the intensity of the relationship. Parents often have far greater influence on their child than a mentor because of the amount of time they spend together (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003 ; Csikszentmihalyi & Larson, 1984 ). As previously discussed, the parenting relationship begins at an early age and is representative (formation of schema) for the child at crucial stages of development (Bowlby, 1969; Erickson, 1968). Thus, the psychological depth and complexity of the parent child relationship is greater than the mentor youth relationship, which may not develop until after some of the crucial stages This research suggests that the parent child relationship typically has a greater influence on the trajectory of the When a strong primary attachment bond exists the mentoring role is o ften supplementary to that bond. The primary caregiver imparts a secure relational schema, thus providing adolescents with social skills to seek out and form additional adult relationships (Benson et al., 1986; Werner, 1993). Primary caregivers, who assume their role as instruments of socialization and development, tend to involve their
36 adolescent in multiple social environments. The increase of supportive networks is positively correlated with adolescents developing mentoring relationships and extra famili al resources (Barajas & Pierce, 2001; Hamilton and Hamilton, 2005; Mortimer, 2003; Pretty, Andrews & Collett, 1994). The mentoring relationships formed between adolescents who possess a secure primary attachment and have a variety of social and personal re development (Erickson et al., 2009). However, with regards to disadvantaged adolescents, researchers have observed that the mentor relationship served as a compensatory role to the s primary caregiver. Galbo (1989) found that unrelated significant adults played a major role in the development of adolescents whose familial ties were not parental bond; of the mentoring process found that some protgs referred to themselves as being the children of their mentors. Likewise, Ainsworth (1989) observed the mentors as parental surroga tes to their protgs. In seeking to understand why mentors may serve a compensatory role, Grossman & Rhodes (2002) found that many at risk adolescents involved in mentoring programs had a history of negative relationships with adults. The absence of a sec ure primary attachment seemed to be the strongest indicator of a compensatory mentor youth relationship. Erickson and colleagues (2009) interviewed students, families and teachers and examined high school transcripts to examine whether informal mentoring relationships
37 pertaining to educational outcomes and academic achievement. Differences were examined between adolescents who were categorized as disadvantaged and advantaged. The disadvantaged adolescents reported less informal mentors than that of the advantaged adolescents. Yet, the mentors served as a compensatory role for disadvantaged adolescents and a complementary role for the advantaged adolescents (Erickson et al., 20 09). The presence of a secure or insecure relationship with parents (primary caregivers) affected the role of the mentor. While congruence exists between the functioning role of parents and mentors, research has indicated that the conjunction of a strong parental bond and a mentor is most beneficial for adolescents. Garmezy (1985) suggested that a triad of protective factors exists for at risk adolescents, one of which is a supportive and cohesive family environment, while another is the presence of additi onal adult support outside the home, such as a mentor. This implies that when the combination of a mentor and strong parental child bonds exists, the outcome of the adolescent is more likely to be successful. Mentor Youth Relationships While the security a nd strength of the primary attachment moderates the functioning role of the mentor, the strength of the mentor youth relationship is also a moderator variable. The factors that contribute to the strength of the mentor youth relationship also determine whet her the mentor serves a complementary or compensatory role. The development of the mentor youth relationship and its contingen t factors are shown in Figure 2 1. Research has found that the most positive mentor youth relationships are characterized by mutu ality, trust and empathy. These qualities increasingly develop as
38 the duration of the mentor youth relationship increases, and as the intensity of the relationship increases (program practices). Other factors that impact the development of mutuality, trus to Attachment Theory; social competencies, also related to previous social interactions stage; and the family/community context, which is related to Social Learning Theory and Social Support Theory. The level of mutuality, trust and empathy within the mentor youth relationship determines the quality of the relationship. The factors influencing the qual ity of the relationship also affect the perceptions adolescents have on the complementary versus compensatory role the mentor may play. As depicted in the diagram, the development of mutuality, trust and empathy in the mentor youth relationship is pivotal to the (Rhodes, 2005). Each mentoring relationship possesses a combination of characteristics unique to each dyad, ranging from strong to weak mentor youth bonds. These ch aracteristics influence the complementary or compensatory function the mentor will emulate, as well outcome. Research suggests the most pivotal factors of influence are : the duration, the intensity, and the quality of the mentoring relationship (Grossman & Rhodes, 2002). In a meta analysis of 55 different mentoring programs and their effectiveness, Dubois (2002) found that the most successful programs reported the most c ontact between mentors
39 and mentee, a longer duration of the mentoring relationships and the presence of emotional bonds between mentee and their mentors. Duration The duration of a mentoring relationship is how long a mentor is actively involved in an ado grow stronger over time and the positive academic, psychosocial and behavioral effect on the adolescent increases the longer the mentoring relationship persists. Longer duration of the mentoring relationship was associated with positive adolescent perceptions, higher scholastic competence, self esteem and behavioral conduct (Rhodes et al, 2005). In regards to developing a strong attachment in mentoring relationships, despite past negative relationships, duration of the relationship is a critical element. At risk adolescents have often already developed an insecure attachment schema, which involves fears and doubts about relationships and often inhibits them from forming strong bon ds with their mentor immediately (Bowlby, 1982; Egeland et al, 1988). However, Grossman and Rhodes (2002) found that when the relationship persisted one year or longer, these barriers were slowly removed, and positive rebuilding occurred. The positive fu nctions of social support networks are achieved most effectively when relationships are steady and continuous. The development and longevity of the mentor relationship brings supportive meaning to the interactions (Nestmann & Hurrelmann, 1994). One study f ound that within the first 6 months of a mentoring relationship only 54% of adolescents considered their relationship with mentor as positive (Keating et al, 2002). Yet, Morrow and Styles (1992) found the majority of lasting positive effects emerged only a fter the mentor relationship has persisted at least
40 one year. Grossman and Rhodes (2002) suggested that a crucial component to mentoring is long term consistency in the relationship. When long term consistency is present, the mentor relationship acts as a have a history of negative parent child relationships (Main, Kaplan, & Cassidy, 1985 ; Olds, Kitsman, Cole, & Robinson, 1997 ). When a mentoring relationship is terminated early, this leads to negative outcomes fo r the adolescent, such as decreased self worth and lower academic competency (Grossman & Rhodes, 2002). Short term mentoring programs and short term relationship based interventions are more detrimental to adolescents rather than beneficial, because short term relationships are believed to reinforce negative patterns and insecure attachments with adult relationships (Downey, Khouri & Feldman, 1997 ; Grossman & Rhodes, 2002 ). In conclusion, Grossman and Rhodes (2002) suggested that because the adult child bon d is complex in nature and often involve specific internal representations of relationships that may need to be corrected the benefits of mentors cannot emerge until a significant amount of time has been invested into the relationship. Therefore, the d uration of the mentor youth relationships will significantly Intensity The intensity of the mentoring relationship refers to the extent to which the mentor is engaged and present in the naturally oc curring environment of the adolescent. Research has shown that supportive relationships must be intense, integrated and (Grossman & Rhodes, 2002). Based on their findings Grossman and Rhodes (2002) on one
41 bond between mentor and mentee. The more frequen t the interactions between the adolescent and their mentor, the deeper the attachment that forms and the more exposure the adolescent has to positive behaviors (Grossman & Rhodes, 2002). The more integrated the mentor is in the natural environment of the adolescent and the more time the mentor spends with the adolescent, more positive effects for the adolescent follow (Herrera et al., 2000; Keller, 2007 ; Parra et al., 2002; Spencer, 2006 ) Based on a number of mentoring assessments and evaluations, Deutsch and Spencer (2009) summarized the value of a more intense mentor youth relationship: Spending time together regularly creates opportunities for mentors to occur, whether through the provision of emotional and instrumental support or by facilitating attachment related processes, such as helping youth more w orking models of relationships. Freedman (1988) characteri zed two types of mentoring relationships: primary and secondary. The primary constituted extraordinary commitment, intensity, and the expression of both positive and negative emotions within the relationship, whereas the secondary was described as helpful and distinguished but with limited support and emotionally distant. Adolescents engaged in primary mentoring relationships reported increased stability, increased sense of competency, the development of a variety of functional skills, overall improvement in quality of life, and increased resiliency to crisis events. Similarly, Langhout and colleagues (2004) examined mentoring relationships and the outcomes of different variations of intensity in the mentoring relationships. The study found that the intens ity of the mentoring relationship not only affects the
42 more effective and impactful. Quality The quality of the bond formed between the mentor and mentee profoundly impacts the outcomes and the perceptions that adolescent have about the mentor role. Rhodes and colleagues (2005) suggested that relationship based interventions, such as men toring programs, are contingent upon and most effective when a strong interpersonal bond is formed. This concept was supported by a large survey of 772 mentoring programs across the nation to assess the quality of relationships formed and how the strength of the mentoring bond is correlated with positive adolescent outcomes (Herrera et al., 2000). Not all mentoring relationships forge strong bonds. Deutsch and Spencer (2009) noted that numerous studies have indicated that individual adolescents within the s ame program can experience a different relationship quality with their mentor. As previously discussed, researchers have begun to categorize different types of mentoring dyads and mentoring styles, all of which to some capacity measure the quality and outc ome of the established mentoring connection. Formal vs. Informal Mentoring The literature informed a distinct difference between informal and formal mentoring relationships. Formal mentoring relationships are created through a formal mentoring program or organization that forges pre assigned mentee to mentor matches (e.g. Big Brother Big Sister) (Erickson, McDonald & Elder, 2009), whereas informal mentoring relationships are characterized by relationships formed naturally between a mentee and mentor with n o formal assigning process.
43 There exist some drawbacks, as well as advantages, to both informal and formal mentoring. For example, while organized mentoring programs were established to social network, these (Goldner& Mayseless, 2008). Furthermore, Sipe and Roder (1999) found that within formal mentoring programs, the staff to volunteer mentor ratio was 1:20 and that the majority of the programs contacted volunteer mentors to monitor the mentoring less than once a month. This provides little to no accountability to ensure the mentoring relationship formed is a strong and positive bond. Formal mentoring program s can lack quality and intensity and only persist for a limited time. The ensuing results can be more characteristic of negative effects rather than positive and reinforce the attitudes towards adults as inconsistent and unsupportive (Grossman & Rhodes, 20 02). Research has noted that formalized youth programs can serve as orphaning structures because the program only provides support and integration for the adolescents as long as they fit into a given age group or time frame (DeVries, 2004). This fragmentat ion from consistent adult support and attachment can be detrimental to the adolescents in the long run. Although informal mentoring is typically more intensely integrated into the countability. Yet, some researchers have suggested that because informal mentoring operates on the internal motivation of the mentor or mentee to persist in the relationship, it lasts longer regardless of the lack of formal accountability (Ragins & Cotton, 1999).
44 (Rhodes & Dubois, 2008). When the mentoring relationship emerges naturally, these qualities are more predominant than in forged mentoring relationships through formal programs. The Afterschool Setting Mentoring relationships exist in vary ing different arenas. Figure 2 1 is an adaptation of the mentoring model, purposed by Rhode s (2005), with particular relevance to the after school setting. This model depicts the process of an adolescent that then ensue. Within the afterschool setting the poten tial of adolescents developing strong mentor relationships with staff are contingent upon factors such as the youth staff ratio, and the frequency the adolescent attends the program. These are significant factors because they influence the forging of a str ong youth staff relationship. If an adolescent attends sporadically they are unlikely to form a strong bond with the staff. Once a mentor relationship has formed the factors such as duration, intensity and quality affect the impact of that relationship on formed and its development outcomes. The develo pmental outcomes that result from the mentor relationship are categorized into socio emotional, cognitive and identity emotional, academic, health and behavioral outcomes.
45 Gender a nd Mentoring Among At risk Population s Research studies have demonstrated that role models, supportive networks and mentors typically exist within the family (Blyth et al., 1982; Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Hendry et al., 1992, Hurd et al., 2009). Yet, low i ncome and minority adolescents have a greater likelihood of being raised in a single parent home, and typically a female headed home (Grossman & Tierney, 1998; Zill, 1993). Research also notes that gender (Hurd, Zimmerman & Reischl, 2010). This poses potential problems for male adolescents seeking gender like role models in a largely female headed environment. Particularly among the African American subgroup of at risk youth, there is an absence of positive male role models in the lives of adolescents (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Masten et al., 1994). The presence of a positive male role model is associated with fewer problem behaviors and better academic attitudes in both male and female adolescents (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003). This study also demonstrated that Interestingly, while the majority of homes are matriarchal, one study found that male female counterparts (Scales & Gibbs, 1996). This points out that the male adolescents in particular se ek male role models and mentors. However, another study found that a high percentage of both males and females alike reported their mother as a salient person in their life (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003). Some r esearch explains that adolescents tend to establi sh seek these relationships with same sex in order to resolve their own gender identification (Coleman and Hendry, 1990; Hendry, et al., 1992).
46 Other theories that support this claim are: Social Identity Theory, the similarity attraction paradigm, and the relational demography perspective (Ragins & Cotton, 1999). In gender matched mentoring dyads, female and male adolescents tend to well as the outcomes of the relationship (Ragins & Cotton, 1999). Males tend to respond to instrumental, heroic and chivalrous forms of helping, whereas females are drawn to social, nurturing and caring forms of help (Eagly & Crowley, 1986). Similarly fe male mentors tend to offer more emotional and personal support in comparison to their male counterparts (Allen, Day & Lentz, 2006; Allen & Eby, 2004; Ragins & Cotton, 1993). In light of these differences, gender shapes the function of the mentor and varies the level of influence the mentor has on an may impact females and males differently, such as relationship duration, perceived importance of the relationship and perceived helpfulness of the relationship (Kram, 1985). Some researchers project that psychosocial approaches to mentoring, often exhibited by women, tend to produce more enduring relationships and thus are more influential (Burke et al., 1993; Kram, 1985). A stud y examining the gender differences in duration and quality of mentoring relationships found that for both males and females the rewards of the mentoring relationships were not maximized until the relationship had endured over multiple years (Rhodes et al., 2008). This study also found that factors beyond gender tended to dictate the quality of the mentoring relationship, factors such and frequency of contact between the mentor and the mentee (Rhodes et al., 2008).
47 Despite gender differences, when the mentoring relationship persists for a longer duration there is greater opportunity for the mentor to fulfill multiple functions in the adolescents development. Importance o f Adolescent Perceptions Morrow and Styles (1992) found two different conceptualizations of the definition relationship, while the second was the social, psychosocial and academ ic outcomes of the adolescent at the present and future time frames. Research has repeatedly shown that mentoring is overall beneficial and impactful on the development of adolescents, however, there currently exists a gap in the mentoring body of knowledg e regarding developing schema. One study specifically sought to dissect the nature of mentoring relationships from the perspective of the adolescents (Langhout et al., 20 04). This study found that the adolescent perspective was irreplaceable to discovering more about the nature of mentoring relationships formed. has the potential to improve me ntoring training and practices. Mentored youth have an invaluable and insightful prospect of knowledge to contribute to the theoretical and process which de contextualizes acti vities or imposes exogenous frames of meaning on Riet, 2008). In seeking to further understand the nature of the mentoring relationship to the socialization and developme nt of adolescents, research is needed to gather a
48 comprehensive picture of the phenomenon, which includes the perspectives of adolescents.
49 Figure 2 1. Model of Youth Mentoring (Rhodes, 2005)
50 Figure 2 2. Mentoring i n After school Setting (Adapted from Rhodes, 2005)
51 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY Research D esign The design utilized for this study was a multiple case study design. In the pr imary unit of analysis. Data was collected from 29 individuals. Interviews with multiple individuals were chosen in order to provide more robust evidence and insight into the mentoring relationship and parental relationship (Herriott & Firestone, 1983). In contrast, a single interview would have only provided information from t he perception of one individual and would not have shed light onto different perspectives. Neither would a single case provide much generalizability to the theoretical population. Alt hough a multiple case study design required more time and resources, it was plausible in a timely manner and not beyond the resources available to conduct the study. The unit of analysis was singular because there were no subunits being explored (Yin, 200 9). The different theories used to inform and frame the study were holistic in nature, which justifies the use of a holistic design. It was reasoned that if throughout the hen the design would shift to an embedded multiple case design (Yin, 2009). However, this was not necessary. The following table (Table 3.1) depicts the correlation between the variables being measured and the constructs of the theories used to inform the study. The table identifies the level of measurement used to assess the independent and dependent variables. The entire study was qualitative, consisting of narrative data.
52 Population The theoretical population in this study was at risk adolescents invo lved in after school programs and living in disadvantaged communities in the United States. G eneraliz ations of this study can theoretically be applied to all at risk adolescents in this region and living circumstance. However, it is recognized that each a t risk adolescent has a unique situation that may impact and differ from the data discovered in this study. school youth programs in two disadvantaged urban communities in Cent ral Florida. The after school programs were located in two counties in Central Florida. These two communities are composed of primarily minority adolescents who are living in poverty by U nited S tates D epartment of A griculture guidelines. Based on demograph ics, this population was representative of and generalizable to the theoretical population. Each state across the nation uses the same definition for at risk youth, which is summarized by Tidwell & Garrett (1994) as youth who are predisposed to juvenile de linquency, school dropout, teen pregnancy, drug abuse and personality disorders. Scholars and State governments were less agreed upon the term disadvantaged. However, disadvantaged is often referred to as youth in communities with high poverty and high une mployment rates, as well as from family conflict and unhealthy peer relations at the social level (Harvey & Delfabbro, 2004). Thus, the two populations are synonymous, respectfully, and findings pertaining to the accessible population will be generalizable to the theoretical population. The accessible population was chosen based on the knowledge of the current formal and informal mentoring relationships integrated into these community after school programs. In seeking to understand the nature of informal a nd formal mentoring
53 relationships in community settings from the perspective of the adolescent, this sample provided an information rich sample to study the phenomena in question (Patton, 2002). The after ion with the Children, Youth, and Families At Risk (CYFAR) Grant and incorporated both the CYFAR program model, as well as other components. The mission of the CYFAR Program wa s to marshal resources of the Land Grant and Cooperative Extension Systems so th at, in collaboration with other organizations, they can develop and deliver educational programs that equip youth who are at risk for not meeting basic human needs with the skills they need to lead positive, productive, contributing lives. The tow main obj ectives of CYFAR is (1) t o support community educational programs for at risk children, youth, and families which are based on locally identified needs, soundly grounded in research and (2) t o integrate CYFAR programming into ongoing Extension programs fo r children, youth, and families insuring that at risk, low income children, youth, and families continue to be part of Extension/4 H programs and have access to resources and educational opportunities. The CYFAR program model focused on the engagement of adolescents in community issues, these included: decision making skills for responsible citizenship, community action, resolution of community issues and overall conflict resolution skills. This program employed specialized staff that interacted with the adolescents approximately four days per week, which amounted to about 10 hours per week. The after school program model involved other staff, community volunteers and mentors. The diverse interactions with adults involved in the after school program provid ed adolescents with a variety of opportunities to engage in informal mentoring relationships with those adults. It was important that the adolescents being
54 interviewed were actively involved in the program and regularly attending in order to create consist ency of youth to staff relationships. This study acknowledged that significant youth adult relationships could form outside of the after school setting; therefore, adolescents with informal or formal mentors in the community or in other programs outside of the CYFAR program (research question 2) were also included. Data C ollection For both counties, prescheduled times were arranged coordinated with the program director to collect the data. All adolescents present on the days of data collection were asked t o participate in the interviews. Afterschool program participants were reminded that their participation was voluntary and would remain confidential. They were also reminded that their responses would be given a number for identification rather than their name. A total of thirty participants participated in the study. Only adolescents whose parents did not return consent forms did not participate. Yet, o f the thirty interviews that were completed, twenty nine were used for data analysis. During one intervie w the audio recorded shut off and the interview was not retrievable. In terview Protocol The in terview protocol (Appendix B ) used to gather data was created during the literature review process of the study. Due to the unprecedented nature of the research questions, no suitable instrument ha d been previously established. Thus it was necessary to create a semi structured interview question format. The purpose of the in terview protocol was to explore the independent and dependent variables outlined above Th en, through which, to observe how the variables relate, what patterns emerge, so as to extract a more in depth understanding of the function of a mentor. The
55 questions were drawn from past research and literature on mentoring, attachment theory, social lea rning theory and social support theory. The interview began with an icebreaker exercise to create a relaxed and open environment for the adolescent. Icebreakers have been shown to increase communication (Zwaagstra, 1997), establish rapport (Chlup & Collin s, 2010) and serve as an introduction to the topic (Collins, 2010). The type of icebreaker used in this study was drawn from Shmueli Goetz and colleagues (2007), who conducted interviews with children concerning parent child attachments. Shmueli Goetz (200 7) began interviews fostered the child to get used to talking with a stranger about personal matters and furthermore, sparked the investigation of possible meaningfu l links between self descriptions and attachment representations. The interview questions were asked initially asked in a logical order to first established the presence of a significant adult and whether the adolescent would term this person a mentor, se cond to establish the location of the significant adult/mentor (whether it be in the community or in the after school setting) and the characteristics of that relationships (intensity, duration, quality), and third to compare the role of this significant a dult/mentor with the primary attachment figure. After numerous revisions, based on researcher reviews, cognitive interviews and pilot tests (further discussed below), the number of questions were reduced as well as the order of the questions rearranged. Th e final instrument contained 11 questions and began by inquiring of the primary attachment, followed by questions exploring the significant adult/mentor relationships, with the last question comparing the two figures. The final instrument
56 included various probing question suggestions in case the adolescents needed assistance or guidance in telling their story (Shmueli Goetz, et al., 2007). The interview questions went through a series of cognitive testing and preliminary trials to refine the protocol and es tablish internal validity (credibility) and trustworthiness of the questions ( Creswell, 2003; Collins, 2003; Willis, 1999; Willis, Roysten & Bercini, 1991). The aim in cognitive interviewing process was to improve the appropriateness of the items asked, en sure that participants were interpreting the questions in a consistent way and the extent to which the items are able to assess the function of the mentor role in comparison to the primary bond figure (DeVellis, 2003). The cognitive interview procedures fo cused on all four aspects of cognitive theory proposed in Willis (1999), as well as thoroughly covering the four actions of the question answer model (Tourangeau, 1984). The cognitive interview participants were first simply asked the questions of the inst rument. Then the participants were asked probing questions about what they thought the item was asking, what specific words meant to them, if there were any unclear or confusing words, what information was necessary to answer the item, if it was difficult to answer the question, if the flow of the questions was appropriate and easy to follow and if they had any suggestions on adding to the assessment of the function of the mentor role. These probing techniques (Willis, 1999) allowed a better understanding o f the thought processes the participants were using to formulate their answer and if their comprehension of the question matched the intended question. Three cognitive interviews were conducted. The participants were at risk adolescents as defined in this study. In order for the cognitive interviewing to build a
57 more valid instrument, it was essential that congruence existed between the sources of validation and the sources of actual interviewing (Adcock & Collier, 2001). Following the cognitive interviews two pilot tests of the instrument were conducted. The participants of the pilot tests were two at risk adolescents that had not participated in the cognitive interview or the actual study. Theses adolescents were chosen based on the foreknowledge of an a ctive mentor present in their lives. The pilot tests were conducted approximately one month before collecting data. Procedure The initial stage s preceding the interviews, w ere to obtain IRB approval parental This inc luded adding an amendment to the existing CYFAR IRB approval. The IRB approval form is located in Appendix D The parental consent form is located in Appendix E and the informed consent for participants is located in Appendix F Interviews were conducted at both CYFAR sites: two counties in central Florida. Through collaboration between the CYFAR site coordinators and the researchers, times and locations were set up to conduct the interviews. In County B an empty classroom at the CYFAR location, separate f rom the other adolescents, was used to maintain privacy while conducting the interviews. In County A either a private room or a location outside by any external audience. All the adolescents were asked to participate; however it was made clear that their participation in the interview was voluntary. The adolescents were informed that the purpose of the interviews was to inquire about their relationships with their mentors and their relationships with their primary caregiver (parents). The adolescents were also
58 informed that what they said during the interview would remain confidential. Nevertheless, one student declined participation. The interviews were conducted in a pr ivate location to ensure confidentiality. The interviewer introduced them self and made small talk for a few minutes to gain rapport with the adolescent. The interviewer asked the adolescent if it was okay to audio record the interview. Then the interviewe r proceeded with the interview protocol (Appendix B ). During the interview the interviewer or an observer took field notes in order to document non verbal cues and characteristics that the audio recorder could not pick up (Strauss & Corbin, 1990). Field n otes provide a more in depth insight into the responses from the individual by highlighting all aspects of their responses ( Strauss & Corbin, 1990 ). The field notes included, but were not limited to: facial expressions, body language and my initial reactio ns to their responses. To conclude the interviews the adolescents were given the opportunity to add anything, clarify anything or ask any questions. After the first few interviews, at each county, the researchers present debriefed and discussed any sugges tions or changes that should be made. When all the interviews were completed the researchers transcribed each interview. This was done through a program called Express Scribe. The program enabled the voices of the interview to be slowed in order that one may type the interview word for word. When the transcribing process was complete, the researchers began to analyze the data. This process involves identifying; coding, categorizing, classifying and labeling the patterns that emerge from the original data ( Patton, 2002).
59 Data A nalysis Despite the various methods of analyzing qualitative data, content analysis, a form of typological analysis, was chosen because of its inductive approach to interpret qualitative data and draw conclusions (Weber, 1990). A logi cal analysis was also used in order to propose flow charts of the process and the relationships between constructs that emerge from the interviews. First the researchers established w This was determined by the responses rec eived and how the nature of the interviews unraveled. sentence or a paragraph. Next, the data was sorted based on topic topical coding. This process was descriptive and mer ely the beginning stages of understanding the The topics were the independent and dependent variables mentioned above. Responses were separated to depict whether the adolesc ent felt the mentoring relationship was complementary to their primary caregiver or compensatory. However, subtopics did emerge (Yin, 2009), and the data was sorted accordingly. ses and synthesized their responses into key phrases, then determined meanings from the data (Patton, 2002). The approach used to develop themes/categories of the data was a systematic reading of the interview responses. A systematic reading was used to di scover the emerging themes as well as the relationship between themes and compare and contrast the themes across sub groups (Elliot & Gillie, 1998). When key phrases reoccurred throughout the responses they became themes of the data. Themes were judged by internal homogeneity and external heterogeneity and were tested by an
60 additiona consistency, inclusivity, and possessing qualities of reproducibility (Patton, 2002). Having another analyst review the categorization system v alidated the dependability of the data analysis process and the trustworthiness of the findings, which increased the internal validity of the overall study (Thomas, 2003). The next aspect of analyzing data themes was examining divergence. This included s urfacing out patterns and investigating the relationship between different cases, themes, topics and specific variables (Patton, 2002). This step also included the examination of deviant cases that produced responses very different than the majority. Explo ring these outlying cases helped understand aspects of the phenomena that may have unintentionally been excluded from the study. The outlier responses pointed out mentoring relationships. Probing and including the deviant cases enhanced the trustworthiness and credibility of the study. During the process of analysis the theoretical framework and the organization of the data was reexamined to ensure that it provided the best p ossible way of understanding the data, paying special attention to outliers and alternative explanations. Once the data was reviewed by other analysts and crosschecked, a logical or matrix analysis was developed to illustrate the relationship between the constructs, themes and variables. The first logic analysis produced a chart that organized the data and helped the researchers and readers view the information in an orderly, yet descriptive, way (Lofland, 1971). This logic analysis chart demonstrates what factors complementary while others perceived the relationship as compensatory. The second logic analysis produced
61 a conceptual model ( revised mentor model ). This logic model laid out the be gging conceptualizations of causality between the constructs of the study (Miles & Huberman, 1999). For subjectivity statement see Appendix C Limitations of the S tudy There is the potential for the adolescents in the program to choose not to participate in the interviews via lack of parental consent or personal reasons. The data were collected once; therefore mortality of cases would not be a limitation of the study. A potential weakness to the dependability and transferability of this study was the bia s generated from poor questions ( Lincoln & Guba, 1985; Tellis, 1997). Although some of the questions were drawn directly from tested and reliable measurements of measurement of attachment between adolescents and adults, the questions pertaining to the comparison aspect were derived from the literature on the subject and not from a previously tested measurement source. To address this limitation the interview questions were rigoro usly tested, in order to est ablish validity credibility and trustworthiness of the questions. However, even after the cognitive interviews, pilot tests and review committee, in retrospect, further modifications to the questions would have provided more in sightful and robust information. Additionally, the adolescents may have responded in a way that was not as accurate and truthful as possible, whether caused by partial recollection of the mentoring relationship or reflexivity (Tellis, 1997). At the time th e interview was conducted the relationship between each mentor youth dyad was at different stages. This affected adolescent responses. The nature of the questions helped diffuse
62 perspective discuss past experiences as well as present experiences, and probing for detailed information to develop a more complete, well rounded understanding of the adolesce Reflexivity may have occurred, in that the adolescents may have expressed answers they felt the interviewer wanted to hear, or relay information thinking that their responses would get back to their mentor. Although confidentiality was p romised and someone. Lastly, the theories employed in the study do not incorporate the potential elopment and life trajectory. Attachment Theory, Social Learning Theory and Social Support Theory examine predominately the environmental factors that influence socialization. However, there is a possibility that genetics can influence adolescent developme nt. Yet, this study does not explore the genetic influences on adolescent socialization.
63 Table 3 1. Outcome/Dependent Measures Theory Construct Variable Measurement Mentor Youth Model Perception/Assessment Function of Mentor Narrative Social Learning Theory Modeling Cognitive Development: Primary source of guidance Narrative Social Support Theory Support Social emotional Development: Primary source of support Narrative Attachment Theory Identity Identity Development: Primary source of identity N arrative Table 3 2. Predictor/Independent Measures Moderators Construct Variables Measurement Mentor Moderators Perception/Assessment Mentor Relationship Quality, Intensity, Duration of mentoring relationship Strength of other existing adult relati onships Narrative Parental Moderators Perception/Assessment Primary Caregiver Relationship (Parent Child Bond) Narrative
64 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Demographic Data Table 4.1 identifies the demographic data of the population used in this study. 24 participant s were from County A and 5 participants were from County B. The population of adolescents interviewed in this study was 79% African American, 20% Hispanic/Latino, and 1% White. There were 18 female adolescents (62%) and 11 male adolescents (38%) that parti cipated in the study. With regards to grade level of the participants: 13 of the adolescents were in 6 th grade, 8 were in 7 th grade, 1 was in 8 th grade, 1 was in 9 th grade, 2 were in 10 th grade, 2 were in 11 th grade, and 1 was in 12 th grade. The data was c ollected in the summer months, thus this information was based on the grade level the students would be going into in the upcoming school year. All of the participants were between the ages of 11 and 18 years old, in accordance with the definition used fo r adolescence (Erikson, 1950) Organization of Data The semi structured interviews were designed to assess the independent and dependant variables outlined in Chapter 3 (Table 3.1). The dependent variables assessed the functioning mentor role, while the i ndependent variables assessed the moderator variables. The independent variables and dependent variables were based on constructs from the theories used to inform this study: Attachment Theory, Social Learning Theory and Social Support Theory. The relation ship between the theories, constructs and variables is depicted in Table 4.2. The last column identifies the socialization needs of adolescents as they correlate to each variable. The socialization needs of adolescents are further explained and depicted in C hapter 5 (Figure 5 1).
65 The dependent and independent variables were measured by narrative means based on one or more associated questions. The relationships between the variables and the questions are depicted in the Logic Chart ( Table A 1 ). During data to each question were The data chunks were first categorized based on variable (multiple questions for each variable), then separated by each question within that variable. Themes were extrapolated for each question. These themes were established by a systematic reading semi structured interview, some themes were similar across variables. However, there were themes that eme rged which were unique to a particular question. Sub themes also emerged. Sub themes in the Logic Chart ( Table A 1 ) are indicated by bold font. Some questions were two fold, containing a descriptive element and an explanatory element. For example, asking adolescents to state the adults that had performed a certain function in their lives. Then, asking a follow up question to explain their response. The two fold questions were broken up as two separate questions in the Logic Chart Also, during the intervi ew, probing and clarifying questions were asked of adolescents. These probing questions varied among each interview. The probing not a comprehensive list of adolescent responses. Rather, the richest quotes were chosen to illustrate the findings. Yet, all the adolescents responses were included in the analysis and frequency tallies (Table 4. 3 ) The Logic Chart ( Table A 1 ) organizes the variables, questions asked to assess each
66 structured format. While analyzing the data, some adolescents identified their primary caregiver as also being their mentor. questions inquiring of the mentoring relationship and those inquiring of the primary attachment relationship, because the individuals were one in the same. In the interviewing protocol adolesce nts were asked to identify non primary caregiver adults who had made a positive impact in their lives. A few adolescents indicated they did not have any other adults in their life, who they considered as significant, besides their primary caregiver. This v oid of a mentor or a differentiated mentor confounded the data analysis. Without a mentor or a differentiated mentor a comparison analysis could not be performed. Therefore, the comparative analysis reflects the omitting of adolescents who did not indicate a non primary caregiver as their mentor (two separate individuals). The Results Table (Table 4. 3 ) demonstrates the relationship between the is representative of the ques tions asked to assess the dependant variables: the to those three variables determine the functioning role of the mentor as either compensatory or complementary The f requency of adolescents attributing particular variables to either their identified primary caregiver or identified mentor is depicted in the second and third columns. When adolescents identified both their mentor and primary caregiver as fulfilling that f unction the frequency is tallied in the fourth column The adolescents who responded in a way that attributed the function to
67 neither a primary caregiver or mentor their response was tallied in the column labeled lation for the adolescents who identified their primary This frequency calculation demonstrates the number of youth who perceived their mentor as compensatory or complemen tary to their primary caregiver. If an adolescent responded that his/her mentor was his/her primary source of guidance, support and identity then the mentor served a compensatory function. If an adolescent responded that his/her primary caregiver was fulfi lling those roles, then his/her mentor served a complementary function. Summary of Findings Function of a Mentor The data indicated adolescents perceived the function of a mentor as either a role model and leader, or a counselor. The adolescents who desc ribed a mentor as a role model and leader mentioned statements l ng a described their perception of a mentor stated that they themselves had never had a ment or and were basing their description of an external rather than experiential knowledge. There were also adolescents that indicated no conception of what a mentor was. inquiring of their idea of a mentor.
68 Primary Source of Guidance The data indicated that the majority of adolescents perceived their primary source of guidance, support and identity as their primary giver, even those with a mentor. There were fifteen adolescents who i ndicated that both a non parental family member, such as a grandma or uncle, and a primary caregiver were their main sources of guidance. Some of these responses were related to gender influences. For example two female adolescents being raised by in singl e father homes felt more guidance family member as the most influential on their maturation and behaviors. T his case was a young male who was raised in a single mother home and had formed a strong relationship with a male in his community. The adolescent stated that the gender of his primary caregiver and his fluence. For example, the youth Another example was a male youth being raised by single mother who looked primarily for guidance from his uncles. Research states that ado lescents tend to establish stronger relationships with same sex adults during adolescence in order to resolve their own gender identification (Coleman and Hendry, 1990; Hendry, et al., 1992). Overall the majority of male adolescents identified a male ment or and the female adolescents identified a female mentor, which is congruent with previous literature (Hurd, Zimmerman & Reischl, 2010). Of the youth who differentiated between their primary caregiver and their mentor, heir mentor served, in conjunction with their
69 primary caregiver, as a source of guidance. The majority of the adolescents identified their primary caregiver as their primary source of guidance in all three themes. The adolescents were asked why they ident ified a particular individual as their primary source of guidance. In the explanatory responses the following subthemes emerged: Discipline/ Rewards and punishments, which referred to the persons ability to and exercise of discipline over the adolescent; P roximity/Closeness of relationship, which referred to the overall amount of time spent the adolescent spent with the person and the intimacy of the relationship; Main source of support, which referred to the person who had provided the most financial, emot ional, and educational support to the adolescent; Main source of verbal guidance, which referred to the person who had provided the most consistent and frequent amount of verbal direction and assistance; nce of behaviors; Gender influences, which is discussed above; and Self motivation/Higher Power, which referred to the internal motivation within the adolescent. There was also a unique and deviant case, whose theme was difficult to articulate. The adolesc guided by the actions of his father, whom he did not know. His family consistently told behaviors to his father, even though he himself did not have recollection of how his in the ad olescent fervently believing that his behaviors were a result of his father. Yet,
70 this attribution contradicts Social Learning Theory, which states that behaviors are observed before they are imitated and then learned (Bandura, 1986). Primary Source of Su pport Similar to the primary source of guidance, the data portrays that adolescents perceive predominantly their primary caregiver as their main source of support. Some adolescents stated other family members as a source of support, but almost always in ad dition to their primary caregiver. This data supports the previous research findings of Hendry and colleagues (1992), in which 79 % of adolescents identified their parent(s) as the most significant adult in their life and 90 % viewing their parents as supp ortive. The current study supports Benson, Mangen and Williams (1986) findings, in that, parents are adolescents preferred source of support. Eighteen adolescents indicated both their mentor and their primary caregiver as significant adults in their lives Eleven adolescents responded that their primary caregiver was their only significant adult. When adolescents were asked to name any adults other than their primary caregiver that had made an important positive different in their life at any time, the maj ority of adolescents in County A responded by naming the CYFAR staff, Mr. B. Nearly all the adolescents in County A referenced Mr. B in a highly positive way, even if they did not identify him as their mentor. Although, many of the adolescents in County A indicated that they considered Mr. B their mentor. Mr. B was not part of any mentor program; he was simply a long time staff member at the CYFAR site. When adolescents were asked to identify who their mentor was, five stated their primary caregiver. Adol
71 responses that their primary car egiver or a non parental family member was their mentor support the findings of Hendry et al. (1989) that mentoring qualities (mutuality, trust and empathy) rendered significant to adolescents are most often found in the family context. Many adolescents in County A also mentioned Mr. B as a mentor, sometimes in addition to a primary caregiver or other relative. Two adolescents mentioned teachers or counselors they had at school, two adolescents mentioned a coach, two adolescents mentioned mentors who were t hough the local church, two adolescents mentioned older siblings, and ten mentioned extended family members such as an aunt or grandparent. Four adolescents indicated they had no mentor. These findings match the findings of Rhodes, Ebert and Fisher (1992) in which fewer than 10 % of participants identify non related community members as their mentor. Primary Source of Identity source was identifying who his/her role model was. The data generated was separated into the following themes: Parent/Grandparent (Primary Caregiver), other family members, mentor, self, and famous Persons. Seven adolescents indicated that there role model was their primary caregiver. For example, one ad coincided with the majority of adolescent responses identifying their primary caregiver as their source of guidance and support. Similarly, previous r esearch has consistently reported that adolescents view their parents as role models (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Hamilton & Darling, 1996). Likewise, numerous research studies have concluded that the family context, particularly the primary attachment, play s the most influential
72 identity development (Blustein & Palladino, 1991; Marcia, 1988; Rice, 1990). Four adolescents stated their mentor was their role model. Three adolesc ents identified non parental, non mentor family members as being their role model. One adolescent admired a cousin serving in the Air Force and thus wanted to join the Air Force herself. An uncle who became a doctor inspired another adolescent and was stat ed to be her role model. The accomplishments of some family members seemed to cause adolescents to have a high regard for them. Eight adolescents indicated famous people that they wanted to be most like, such as, Lebron James or Oprah. Similarly, these ado lescents admired the accomplishments of the famous people; yet, there was not the element of closeness or a relationship between the role model and the adolescent. Five adolescents stated they wanted to be most like themselves. Primary Caregiver Relations hip Assessing the primary caregiver relationship was three fold; the determining questions were both descriptive and explanatory. The descriptive data indicated that 11 adolescents viewed their mother as their primary caregiver, nine adolescents viewed the ir father as their primary caregiver, five viewed both, six viewed their grandparents as their primary caregivers, one adolescent viewed her aunt and uncle as her primary caregivers and one adolescent viewed her aunt and father as her primary caregivers. O ne adolescent viewed his mentor and his primary caregiver as most responsible for raising him. The first explanatory question asked adolescents to describe the characteristics of their primary caregiver. The sub themes that emerged were separated into po sitive and negative categories. The positive characteristics of primary caregivers were
73 diverse. A comprehensive list is depicted in Table 4.2. The most common positive characteristics were: hard working skills, intelligence, respectful, and humorous. The negative characteristics of primary caregivers were: prevalent anger or meanness, job were in the prevalent anger or meanness sub theme. For example, one adolescent said nother adolescent said she did no t The second explanatory portion of this topic asked student to describe the relationship with their primary caregiver. T he sub themes that emerged were separated into positive and negative categories. The positive sub themes were: ability to confide in the primary caregiver, the primary caregiver providing for the adolescents physical needs, engaging in activities with thei r primary caregiver, and the primary caregiver having a good sense of humor. The negative subthemes were: the primary caregiver theme included variou s cases, from one adolescent getting punched by her mom to another adolescent who felt she could do nothing right. Mentor Relationship The interview question exploring the mentoring relationship was open ended and only included probing questions when nec essary. The probing questions can be viewed on the interview protocol (Appendix B ). The probing questions sought to uncover the duration, intensity and quality of the mentoring relationship. Various and widespread responses resulted from the adolescents. H owever, because many adolescents identified their primary caregiver as their mentor, it was impossible to separate
74 those inquiring of the primary attachment relationship. Of the adolescents that did not indicate their primary caregiver as their mentor, the following themes emerged in the describing their mentor relationship: duration, intensity, quality and outliers. The duration and intensity themes were straightforward an d consistent across responses. The quality theme generated sub themes because of themes were: the mentor gives advice and the dyad shares meaningful communication, the dyad engages in recreational and le isurely activities together, the mentor is funny or jokes around, the mentor is caring, the mentor gives verbal affirmation, and the mentor is helpful. There were four deviant cases. Three adolescents described negative experiences they had with a past me went on to describe how this was a formal mentor through a school based program. However, her assigned mentor did not pay at tention to her or listen to her during their sessions, therefore, she stopped going. This adolescent portrayed a negative connotation towards mentors. One adolescent described a situation in which she was given a mentor, later identified as a counselor, to talk to about her problems. This mentor youth relationship was short Another adolescent described a recent situation in which a man in his community posed mentor since that time. The last deviant case was an adolescent who throughout the
75 interview divulged how his mentor was a negative influenc e on him. He described how his uncle encouraged him to fight at home, school, and in the neighborhood. Comparing Mentor to Primary Caregiver There were various responses among the adolescents when prompted by the would you tell your (insert identified primary this question because they had identified their primary caregiver as their mentor, thus this question was irrelevant. How ever, among those who were asked to compare their primary caregiver and mentor in this respect, a mixed spread of responses emerged. Some adolescents noted their primary caregiver and bolstered their response with a brief rationale as to why. These explana tions indicated that due to duration and intensity of the primary attachment, adolescents were more prone to discourse with their primary caregiver and look to them for support before their mentor. Three adolescents stated their mentor as the first person they would seek out to divulge information and find support. These adolescents explained reasons why their mentor relationship was stronger, in some regards, than their primary attachment. One adolescent said her er adolescent remarked how his mother support in their mentor relationship first and foremost. There were three adolescents that identified both their primary caregiver a nd their mentor as persons they would discuss problems with and find support in. Lastly, there were eight adolescents who either said they did not talk to either their primary caregiver or mentor, and rather kept to themselves, or did not answer the questi on.
76 Conclusion The findings of this study illuminate the level of influence a mentor has on the caregiver. The domains of influence evaluated were: cognitive developmen t, social emotional development, and identity development. A great deal of research has examined the factors contributing to the positive maturation of each domain, repeatedly demonstrating the immense influence of primary caregivers. The findings of this study further support claims that elevate primary caregivers as the main influence on adolescent development, socialization and life trajectory. Specifications and implications of these findings will be discussed in C hapter 5
77 Table 4 1. Demographics Co unty Respondent Ethnicity Sex Grade Age Grades (self reported) County A 1 African American Female 6 th 11 2 African American Male 7 th 12 13 3 African American Male 8 th 14 15 4 African American Male 6 th 12 13 s 5 African American Female 6 th 11 6 White Female 6 th 12 13 7 African American & Hispanic/Latino Female 6 th 12 13 8 African American Female 7 th 12 13 9 African American Male 6 th 12 13 10 Af rican American Female 7 th 14 15 11 African American Female 7 th 12 13 12 African American Female 7 th 12 13 13 African American Female 6 th 12 13 14 African American Male 7 th 12 13 15 African Am erican Male 6 th 12 13 16 African American Female 11 th 16 17 17 African American Male 12 th 18 + 18 African American Female 10 th 16 17 19 African American Male 10 th 18 + 20 African American F emale 11 th 16 17 21 African American Female 6 th 12 13 22 African American Female 6 th 11 23 African American Male 7 th 12 13 24 African American Female 6 th 11 County B PAEI Hispanic/Latino Femal e 6 th 12 13 LCGY Hispanic/Latino Male 9 th 14 15 10QMN Hispanic/Latino Female 7 th 12 13 MFEF Hispanic/Latino Female 6 th 12 13 JXLH Hispanic/Latino Male 11 th 18+
78 Table 4 2. Assessment of Var iables Assessment Variable Theory Construct Socialization Need Functioning Mentor Role Primary source of guidance Social Learning Theory Modeling Cognitive Development Primary source of support Social Support Theory Support Social Emotional Development Primary source of identity development Attachment Theory Identity Identity Development Moderator Variables Primary Caregiver Relationship Attachment Theory Perception/ Assessment N/A Mentor Relationship Mentor Youth Model Perception/ Assessment N/A
7 9 Table 4 3 Results Table Independent Variables Dependent Variables Functional Role Primary Caregiver Mentor (differentiated) Both (differentiated) Other Total Shapes your behaviors 17 2 4 6 29 Teaches you right from wrong 24 0 5 0 29 Most influential on your growth as an individual 22 3 2 2 29 The significant adults in your life 11 0 18 0 29 The one person you want to be most like 6 4 1 18 29 The most responsible person for raising you 26 1 1 1 29 Relationship characterized by mutu ality, trust & empathy 9 7 12 1 29 The person you would talk to if something were upsetting you 15 3 3 8 29 Totals 130 20 46 64
80 CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION Overview The inquiry fueling this study was to determine whether adolescents perceive their mentor s as complementary or compensatory to their primary caregiver in the purposes and practices towards more advantageous methods of intervention for at risk youth. Antisocial and negative behaviors among at risk adolescents, such as Juvenile delinquency, are on the rise in the United States. Mentoring been posed to have potentially beneficial effects on ameliorating this phenomenon. This study examined solely at risk adolescent s. Typically this population experiences insecure primary attachments and higher frequency of exposure to negative behaviors (Anderson, 1990; Anderson, 1999; Boyle & Hassett Walker, 2008; Sampson, Morenoff, Raudenbush, 2005). Mentoring literature tends to indicate that a and life trajectory. Some research has even posited that mentoring can serve as a corrective measure for adolescents predisposed to negative attachments, behaviors and environments (Rhodes, 2005). For an at risk adolescent a mentor can: repair the negative internalizations produced from an insecure primary attachment (Rhodes, 2005); assist in the prosocial maturation and identity development of the adolesce nt who is living in an antisocial environment (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Comer, 1989; Erickson, 1968; Hurd et al., 2011); provide the adolescent with more frequent exposure ier et al., 2000; Hurd et al., 2011; Jekielek et al., 2002; Zimmerman et al., 2002); and provide
81 emotional and physical support for the adolescent who lacks it from other sources(Keating, et al., 2002). All of these functions that the mentor serves are int ervention focused. In other words, these functions are aimed at compensating for the indicated that their mentors served a minimal and complementary role in their socializa tion. Conc eptual M odel A conceptual model (Figure 5 1) was developed in accordance with the findings of this study. The model depicts the process of socialization as it is projected to occur within a mentor youth relationship, including the moderator vari ables that impact this socialization, this study was looking at specifically the role the mentoring relationship plays in the socialization process. Mentoring research pr ojects that mentoring is able to significantly improve developmental outcomes of adolescents such as delinquent behaviors, mental well being, academic success, and positive life outcomes for adolescents who have a positive mentor (Catalano et al, 2004; Dub ios, et al., 2011; Grossman & Rhodes, 2002). This study examines the impact a mentor has on adolescent socialization/ developmental outcomes in comparison to the impact of a primary attachment. Therefore, the conceptual model begins with the mentoring rela tionship and ends with the socialization outcomes of the adolescent. An emotional development (support), and identity development (attachment). Each of these developmen tal needs correlate with specific theories. This study employed Social
82 Support Theory to inform social emotional development, Social Learning Theory to inform cognitive development and Attachment Theory to explain identity development. The socialization n eeds were examined through open ended questions, in which the adolescents attributed the fulfillment of those needs to either their primary caregiver or their mentor and then explained why. This data then determined whether adolescents perceived their ment or as complementary or compensatory to their primary caregiver. The interview questions sought expanded explanations of the factors that influenced moderator variables influen cing the mentoring relationship. Mutuality, Trust, Empathy Research posits that in order for a mentor to be influential in one or more within the mentor youth relationshi p (Rhodes, 2005). However, several moderator factors affect the establishment of mutuality, trust and empathy within the mentor youth relationship: parental moderators and mentor moderators. The adolescents in this study expressed the impact of both parent al and mentor moderators. Parental Moderators insecure. To the contrary, adolescents were prone to only mention the positive aspects of their primary attachment. Only when adoles cents were prompted to note any negative characteristics of their primary attachment did they divulge indications of a more insecure primary attachment. Regardless of these negative characteristics mentioned, according to most adolescents their primary att achment was strong and
83 secure was speculated because of their mention of negative characteristics and because of research pertaining to the at risk youth population ( Tidwel l & Garrett, 1994 ). primary attachment. According to research and literature standards the adolescents included in this study were categorized as disadvantaged and at risk, meaning th ey have a greater risk of being predisposed to negative behaviors and living in unstable homes with insecure primary attachments (Tidwell & Garrett, 1994). It became evident throughout the study that the adolescents had little to no knowledge of the determ ined definition of a secure attachment by which to compare their own. Neither did the adolescents have personal experiences of a secure attachment to evaluate against their own. While a researcher, with a breadth of knowledge, may categorize the adolescent primary attachment as insecure, the adolescent, limited to the knowledge of his/her own experiences, may categorize his/her primary attachment as secure. This dilemma became evident in the study. The data revealed that in fact each adolescent perceived their primary attachment as secure, despite the negative factors or lack of positive factors divulged. For example, adolescents indicated that their primary caregiver was: their role model, the strongest influence on their conception of right and wrong, t he main determinant of their behaviors, and their primary source of guidance and support. Yet, some adolescents simultaneously indicated that their parents were often not at home, or displayed anger and detachment towards them on a regular basis. Thus the data pertaining to secure and insecure attachments was hard to distinguish due to the differentiation between research standards and the perception of the adolescents. The
84 adolescents that divulged insecure characteristics about their primary caregiver wer e deemed insecure attachments for comparative purposes of the study. This study would have benefited from a more in depth and thorough examination have provided more c to their primary att achment and the research, comparatively. All of the adolescents that described a secure primary attachment, from their perspective, also described their mentor relationship as characterized with mutuality, trust and empathy. This supports the concept tha t a secure attachment forms a relational schema by which adolescents are able to engage in prosocial relationships and improves their social competencies (Hartup & Laursen, 1999; Hesse, 1999). Yet, contrary to the above research, some adolescents that des cribed an insecure primary attachment characterized their mentor relationship as possessing mutuality, trust and empathy. However, these mentors were non parental family members, whom Bowlby (1969) described as secondary attachments. In accordance with Bow majority of these mentors/secondary attachments had been strongly involved in the and Furman & Buhrmester (1985) indicating that often extended fam ily members act as surrogate parents to adolescents with troubled primary attachments. developmental outcomes. This is in part due to the nature of secondary attachments, in
85 that they cl osely resemble primary attachments. Secondary attachments can fulfill the functions of primary attachments and can serve, at a very early stage of development, as a buffer for an insecure primary attachment (Bowlby, 1969). Thus the early involvement of a s interpersonal history and the development of social competencies (Hartup & Laursen, 1999; Hesse, 1999). These mentors/secondary attachments also composed the ch influences the establishment of mutuality, trust and empathy within the mentor youth relationship. However, the mentors/secondary attachments were not as frequently mentioned as fulfilling the functions of socialization hment. There were five adolescents that described their primary attachment as insecure yet characterized their non familial mentor relationship with mutuality, trust and empathy. All five of these adolescents identified Mr. B as their mentor. It is import ant to note that these five adolescents defied the influence of parental moderators on the development of strong mentor youth relationship. However, even in light of expressing an insecure primary attachment and a strong mentor relationship, these adolesce nts mainly attributed their primary caregiver as fulfilling the functions of cognitive development (guidance), social emotional development (support), and identity development (attachment). Thus the parental moderators seemed to have a lesser impact on the development of a strong mentor relationship yet had a stronger impact on adolescent socialization. Mentor Moderators The mentor moderator variables were duration, quality and intensity of the mentoring relationship. All the adolescents that identified a mentor, differentiated from
86 the primary caregiver, characterized the mentor relationship as possessing mutuality, parental family members/secondary attachments, even the non famili al mentors were described similarly in reference to duration, quality and intensity of the relationship. All the adolescents described their identified mentors as being involved in their life for over one year, the majority being more than five years. The adolescents uniquely described the quality of their mentor relationship with traits or experiences that fall unde r the category of mutuality trust or empathy. And they described interacting with their mentor frequently and in multiple settings. As previo us research delineates, for a strong mentor youth bond to arise, mentors and youth must spend a significant amount of time together on a consistent basis (Spencer, 2007). Only then will youth derive significant benefits from the relationship. The data gene rated in this study supports the assertions of Rhodes (2005) that the establishment of a strong mentor youth bond is fundamentally rooted in the duration, quality and intensity of the mentoring relationship. Research poses that the influence of the mentor on the socialization of the adolescent (developmental outcomes) is based on these moderators of duration, quality and intensity of the relationship (Rhodes, 2005). However, even with a strong mentor relationship in the life of the adolescent, the primary caregiver was predominantly attributed to having more impact on the socialization of the adolescent. Some of the adolescents reasoned their primary caregiver was most influential on their behaviors and attitudes because of the overall amount of time they spent with their primary caregiver outweighed the time spent with their mentor. Time that was replete with memorable conversations of instruction and guidance, modeling of behaviors, and
87 disciplinary actions. Thus the factor of time, because of the various variables that occur within that time, appeared most influential on the socialization of the adolescent. The This study found that the strength of a mentoring relationship increased as the duration, intensity and quality of the relationship increased. Yet, despite the presence of a strong mentor relationship, the impact of the mentoring relationship on adolescent socialization and develo primary attachment. In other words, even when an excellent mentor is present, the level of influence that mentor has in the life of the adolescent pales in comparison the level of influence the primary caregiver has. While a mentor can be a strong addition to the protective factors of an adolescent, the amount of influence that mentor is going to have on the life trajectory of the adolescent was found to be minimal. Needs for Socialization The needs f or adolescent socialization are cognitive development, social emotional development and identity development. ognitive development is advanced through their primary source s of guidance as described in Social Learning Theory. Social Learni ng Theory articulates that t he mechanism through which cognitive development occurs is predominately modeling. ocial emotional development is largely influence d by and cultivated by their source s of support as described in Social Support Theory. dentity development is anchored in the quality of their primary attachment, ac cording to Attachment Theory.
88 Socialization including all three domains, is a complex and intricately intertwined process. The construct s and th eories employed in this model are inseparably linked and interdependent. For example, according to Social Learning Theory, the imitation of a modeled behavior can result in a learned behavior, which then becomes habitual and contributes to ones identity T hus Social Learning theory employs the construct on identity formation, yet identity development is also dependent upon the primary attachment, relating to Attachment Theory. Another example is that Attachment Theory explains the characteristics of a secur identity formation. Yet, one of these characteristics is support, which is further elucidated in Social Support Theory Social Support Theory explains that primary attachments provide necessary supportive f unctions for adolescents and foster social emotional development. The complexity of socialization is important to understand in light of the discussion regarding the results of this study. Because the process of socialization is intricately intertwined, i t was difficult to extract a single construct or theory to assess the socialization of adolescents adequately. Similarly, the discussion of results cannot isolate a single finding from the context of the whole phenomenon of adolescent socialization. While this discussion does attempt to explain the findings topically, the findings are to be understood in context of the whole. Cognitive development can refine their thinking sk ills and potentially reform negative thought patterns (Rhodes, 2004). This often comes through the form of modeling. According to Social Learning Theory, adolescents learn behaviors primarily by observing and then imitating the
89 behaviors of others (Bandura 1969). Especially during adolescence, the behaviors of adults that are most frequently demonstrated to the adolescent determine the (Bandura, 1969; Huesmann, 1988; Anderson, 1 990; Bell & Jenkins, 1993; Freedman, 1993; Rhodes, 1994; Greenberger et al., 1998; Zimmerman, Steinman, & Rowe, 1998; Synder et al., 2003; Hurd et al., 2011). The mentoring relationship is a platform through which the adolescent is frequently exposed to th e modeling of positive behaviors, thus However, the duration of and intensity of a caregiver or mentor relationship directly correlates to the amount of exposure an adolescent has to the different forms of guidance fro m that individual. In essence time is the most pivotal factor. The majority of through ve rbal instruction, discipline, and modeling. If at all the mentor was mentioned as serving this function it was in conjunction with the primary caregiver. Thus the mentor decidedly served a complementary role to the primary caregiver in reference to cognit ive development. For many of the adolescents their primary caregiver had spent the most time with of time (duration) established the psychological presence of the primary caregiver, even when physically absent (Hirschi, 1969). For example,
90 Ye even if like anything got in my mind to like say something back to somebody like mean or anything, I would always remember what she said. So I think she impacts my behavior mostly. The data indicated that the most impactful verbal instruction was that which was consistent and over a long period of time. For most of the adolescents their mentoring relationship was not the primary source of verbal guidance nor comme nsurate to the primary attachment, due to the element of time. Another indication of guidance was discipline. Some youth felt their primary caregiver was their primary source of guidance because of disciplinary actions. Some adolescents stated their prima mentioned her mom was the most influential on her behaviors and conception of right vs. wrong, Modeling was another influencing aspect o f guidance mentioned by the adolescents. The influence of modeling, like verbal guidance, was affected by the duration and intensity of a relationship. Many of the adolescents in this study indicated that the majority of their time was spent with their pri mary caregiver, thus increasing exposed to the behaviors and attitudes of their primary caregiver or family members, than their non familial mentor. One adolescent, aft er disclosing his frequent delinquent
91 particular negative behavior from another individ Some adolescents indicated their primary caregiver as their role model. Role models have a significant effect on the behaviors of adolescents. Research explains that role models can serve as a positive influence or a negative influence depending on the behaviors the role model is observed engaging in (Hurd et al., 2011). Coleman and Hendry (1990) found that, The function of parents as role models during adolescence is a surprisingly significant one. It is undoubted ly a popular assumption that, all things being equal, parents have a more important part to play during childhood than during adolescence. Our brief review indicates that this is far from the truth. At a time when role models are necessary to a far greater extent than ever before, it is upon parents above all the adolescents depend for knowledge and example. Primary caregivers were not only the main source of guidance but also a strong predictor of adolescent behaviors. This study extends the support of pr evious research socialization (Bryant & Zimmerman, 2003; Parke & Buriel, 1998). Social emotional development Social emotional development was assessed through const ructs of Social emotional development. Mentoring research postulates that the social emotional development of adolescents can be furthered through mentoring in several ways, such as serving as a sounding board and providing a model of effective adult communication, scaffolding
92 n which relational skills can be developed (Rhodes, 2004; Rhodes, Grossman, & Resch, 2000). While social emotional developmental outcomes of adolescents has been shown to improve through mentoring interventions, these results have come through short term s tudies that lack assessing the long term effects of mentoring, if any. This study demonstrated that adolescents view their primary caregiver as their primary source of support. This was particularly evident in the lack of differentiation between the prima ry caregiver and mentor. The fact that some adolescents stated their that parents typically assume the mentor role. All of the adolescents mentioned their primary caregiver as a significant adult in their lives and only eighteen mentioned their identified mentor (sometimes a secondary attachment figure) as a significant adult. This supports the findings of Galbo (1986), that regardless of other strong adult bonds, adolescent s regard their parents as the most significant adults in their life. When adolescents were asked whom they would talk to if something were upsetting them the majority stated their primary caregiver. This data evidently points to the greater influence prima ry attachments have on the social emotional development of adolescents than that of the mentor relationship. However, the development of social and emotional competencies is a reiterative and cumulative process fueled by the means of social support availa ble to the adolescent (Heller, Swindle & Dusenbury, 1986). Thus the presence of a mentor is not insignificant or un impactful. The adolescents did discuss the support that they received from their mentors and expressed their appreciation and reliance on th at support. While
93 the social emotional development of adolescents is largely more affected by their influence appraisals, which in turn determine the nature of future socia l interactions and Identity development Identity development was correlated with Attachment Theory, due to the profound and long lasting effects attachment has on an adolesce (Bretherton, 1985; Schultheiss & Blustein, 1994; Scott, et al., 2011). As research states the main determinant of the personality and identity of a child is his/her primary attachment (Scott, et al., 2011). The construct of identity was deter mined by whom the adolescent desired to be most like. This measurement of identity, retrospectively, is an inadequate measure. This study would have benefited from more thorough questions eless, the data generated indicated that most adolescents were driven to be like neither their primary attachment nor their mentor, but rather famous or related persons who were talented and successful. Mentoring research postulates that mentoring relatio nships may facilitate identity hat they would like to may open doors to activities, resources, and educational or occupational opportunities on which youth can draw to construct their sense of identity Toyokawa, & Matsuda, 2002). In this regard mentoring has been shown to provide
94 elements of identity development. However, the adolescents in this study were not probed on particular facets of identity development. Thus, conclusive sta tements cannot identity development in comparison to their primary caregiver. However, research has consistently reported that the family context, particularly the primary attachment, plays 1991; Marcia, 1988; Rice, 1990). Future research should expand on the influence r primary caregiver. Youth Outcomes socialization were those whom they had spent the most time with, which for most adolescents were their primary caregivers. However, the intervi ew questions in Appendix B did not articulate whether the influence of the primary caregiver was moving in a positive or negative direction. Many adolescents articulated that they currently perpetuate the behaviors of their primary caregiver, including ne gative behaviors such as acting out in anger towards others or having a disrespectful attitude towards others. In this, adolescents seemed to not be fully cognizant of the negativity of such behaviors demonstrated and modeled to them. Perhaps this is becau se of a lack of comparative experiences and knowledge. Regardless of the involvement of a mentor, even a secondary attachment mentor, the influence of the mentor paled in comparison to that of the primary caregiver. This finding aligns with the literatur e on Attachment Theory. The complexity of the primary attachment tends to hold most sway on the developmental outcomes of
95 children and adolescents. In addition to the complexity of the parent child bond the duration and intensity of the parent child bond was far greater than the mentor youth relationship, affecting its level of influence. All in all, this study supported that primary whether negatively or positively (Bow lby, 1969; Goldner & Mayseless, 2008; Gualt Sherman, 2011; Hendry et al., 1989; Hendry et al., 1992; Hirschi, 1969; Larson & Richards, 1994; Laub & Sampson, 1988; Masten, 1994; Parke & Buriel, 1998; Scales & Gibbons, 1996; Youniss & Smollar, 1985). Despi te the characteristics of at risk and low income environments, the data overwhelmingly indicated that the adolescents did not perceive their mentor as serving a compensatory function. When a mentor was involved at all, he/she served a complementary role in the life of the adolescent. Yet, it was apparent that the combination of a strong primary attachment and a mentor was the most beneficial for the positive socialization of an adolescent (Garmezy, 1985). This study also appeared to signify that when the me the mentor was even stronger. This study decidedly supports that mentoring still has the potential to hel p ameliorate negative and delinquent adolescent behaviors, when done correctly. Implications for Practice and Recommendations This study concluded that the primary attachment figure bears most impact on and life trajectory. Research consistently evidences that secure and positive primary attachments are the strongest protective factor against negative socialization and life outcomes (Belsky & Cassidy,
96 1994; Bretherton, 1985; Cotterell, 1992; Hirschi,1969; Loeber and Dishion, 1983 ; Simourd and Andrews, 1994; Parke & Buriel, 1998; Taylor, 1994). Yet, mentoring emerged as an intervention aimed at correcting or circumventing the negative socialization of adolescents. However, the effects of mentoring prove to b e limited. While mentoring attempts to serve as corrective measure for at risk adolescents who lack a secure and/or positive primary attachment, the level of influence a mentor has on ts. Thus the mentor serves a complementary function rather than the posited compensatory function. The findings of this study deepen the understanding of mentoring as an intervention for at risk youth and will guide future modifications on mentoring pract ices. The functioning mentor role in the life of an adolescent was (1) more influential when accompanied by both longer duration and greater intensity of relationship; (2) complementary to the primary attachment; (3) less impactful than the primary attac hment figure in multiple domains; and (4) greater when mentor and primary attachment were in relationship with each other. These findings project that mentor intervention efforts should focus on establishing long term and intense mentor youth dyads. The a mount of influence an individual had on an adolescents life trajectory was directly related to the amount of time the individual spent with the adolescent. Thus in light of this finding, which is also supported by mentoring and child development literature the most impactful mentors will be those that are spending the most time with the adolescent, hence: duration and intensity. Emphasizing intensity and duration in mentor youth dyads involves averting
97 volunteer drop out and preventing other caus ations of mentor youth relationship dissolvement. place d into a factory model of producing positive youth outcomes at mass quantity, the results will be minimal. While the need for posit ive adolescent socialization is high and increasing, the most advantageous and effective solution is not through mass production concepts. This study begins to uncover the root cause of negative adolescent socialization: lack of secure and positive primary attachments (attachment theory) and lack of frequent/consistent exposure to prosocial behaviors (social learning theory). In essence, socialization occurs through a secure relationship. Efforts that bypass the necessity of a strong and secure relationship which is the medium for which corrective socialization/development can take place, will produce little to no long term effects on adolescents. I ntervention methods are constrained by both money and man power. Thus, many intervention strategies aim at uti lizing financial and human capital available to mass produce results that will be deemed as statistically signi ficant. However, statistical significance in the short term does not always equate to significant developmental outcomes in the long term. Furthe rmore, resources are spread thin in trying to reach as many adolescents as possible and in delivering poor quality interventions often serve minimal benefits to at risk adolescents. While the most effective interventions for at risk youth come through a qu ality, long term and intense relationship (mentoring), the limited volunteer force, lacking financial support, and complexity of attachments hinder the ability to mass produce. Even so, in order for mentoring interventions to be most beneficial and effecti ve in producing long term,
98 positive developmental outcomes, efforts should focus on the establishment and support of enduring and intense mentor youth dyads. The findings of this study also recommend that mentoring interventions intentionally cultivate re with their primary caregiver the influence of the mentor was even stronger. This practice would also help facil itate a third recommendation, which is that more interventions be aimed at holistic family intervention. In light of the overwhelming influence primary attachments have on the socialization of adolescents, inclusively targeting the primary caregiver, the p arent child bond, and adolescent development may prove more beneficial in the long term. However, it is recognized that this intervention method poses challenges and complications of its own. Perhaps parents may be unwilling to be involved or unavailable t o participate, due to single parent homes, etc. o r once in the program parents may be unwilling to modify certain habits and behaviors already ingrained in their identity and lifestyle. Methods of holistic family interventions are often contingent upon pa rental compliance and commitment to change, yet this is often a great barrier to family interventions. Mentors that attempt to forge a lasting relationship informally engage in a more holistic family intervention. Mentoring pr ograms should direct their volunteers to be intentional about building these relationships with their Future Directions for Research Mentoring research has investigated th e developmental outcomes of mentoring and the factors that influence the development outcomes of the mentoring relationships
99 (Dubois, 2011). Some studies even compared mentor interventions to other youth programs to examine and differentiate the level of a ffect mentoring had on youth outcomes. While many studies have concluded that mentoring is a strong and influential intervention method for at risk youth, these findings were reliant upon short term results. Previous research has primarily examined short t erm developmental outcomes of in the long term. Yet, interestingly, when long term results of mentoring were examined ren and adolescents, the 1997). Of the few studies that have collected follow up assessments of mentoring programs revealed even weaker effects, and pointed out an erodi ng of benefits after youth left programs and relationships with mentors ended (Rhodes and Dubois, 2008). In response, t his study was a preliminary study, leading the way for a more systematic method of assessing the functioning role of a mentor and his/her level of influence. Qualitative studies, like this one, provide insight and direction for future studies, such as revealing pertinent variables that impact the level of influence a mentor may have and why. The findings of the study highlight future resear ch agendas as well as implications on the theory and techniques in current mentoring practices. This study laid the ground work for future research to (1) examine the long term impacts of mentoring, (2) examine projected modifications for mentoring program s and practices, adolescents pertaining to long term developmental outcomes.
100 Figure 5 1 Adolescent Mentoring. Adapted from Model of Youth Mentoring (Rho des, 2 005).
101 APPENDIX A LOGIC CHART Table A 1. Logic Chart Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Function of a Mentor What is a Mentor? Role Model & Leader 3. someone who teaches me what is good not Counsel or ne who is there for me when I am No Conception Primary source of guidance 1. Who do you feel has the most impact on shaping your behaviors? (descriptive) 2. Who teaches you right from wrong? (descriptive) 3. Who do you feel is most influential on your growth as an individual? (descriptive) Parent/Grandparents (Primary Caregiver) Quotes are listed in the below cell: with the Other Family Members Mentor: CYFAR/Community
102 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Self And Why? (Explanatory linked to the above 3 descriptive questions) Discipline, Rewards & Punishment mom because like since they are the most challenging ones, like if I ever did something bad, they would do something to me where whole entire family because like they would give me some challenges. Like if you act bad, your going to d if I do wrong my dad because wrong he knows to get out and jump all over me and so he talks to me about it and tells why and if me want to do, to be right a lot. To do a lot of Proximity & Closeness of Relationship mom because ever since I wa s a baby she im [Dad] and am not 8. everyday. They have been with me since I was Main Source of Support has straightened me up... He is the only one that will follow up with me and see how I am me, she gave me that unconditional love. Just showed me how life really is when I get older
103 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes attitude and used to get mad at people all the time a you. Ignore them and come talk to me when Main Source of Verbal Guidance tell me to talks to me telling me that I can do better than that and to stay away from the boys getting me in trouble. She really pushes me to do the right mom, my Grandma, my auntie and my down and talk to me and it sinks through. You mama talks to me every night. Or like three times a week she t that is not mature she tells me to do it and how to be mature and how to grow up for when I get and talk to me. Like one day I remember he came to my school in third grade and talked to me about smoking. Now he asks me about that little talk we had about smoking to remind me what my dad told me when I was little and he would remind me like ever y few years. They like really nice and she always does the right God would want you to do and also the golden rule: like treat others how you wan t to be always in my head. I can always imagine her even if like anything got in my mind to like say something back to somebody like mean or anything, I would always remember what she said. So I think she impacts my behavior done some of the stuff we have. So, I mean, he does wro
104 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes about more things that I want to do in life and she tells me do you want to do that, right from wrong. And so she c ould just help me by like Modeling being her, like what I said in the beginning, she pay her bills. And yea, just physically watching and is married and has a nice house. She has se of both (home & friends). Like, I see my people doing it and like, 5. Have you learned that behavior? (referring to anger problems) decisions to do stuff, but mostly I sometimes ter/mentor). I follow her Gender Influence re comfortable talking with a guy Self Motivation/ Higher Power hard about something. I was suspended from school for my third fig ht and was going to get kicked out and during that 10 day suspension I was thinking about everything. And made up my mind to get my grades up. I am in summer learned there was a certain time and place to do somethi Did anyone spark these thoughts?
105 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Deviant Case Do you know your dad and how often do you see him? o more. I When was the last time you saw your dad? Primary source of support Who are the significant adults in your life? Parent/Grandparents (Primary Caregiver) 1. dad, and sometimes Why do you say sometimes your grandma? Other Family Members like having another dad. So, I mean they think the same, by my uncle is more laid back. foster care and she took us because no one else wanted us. And my uncle because eve ry time I have a question about my dad he knows the answers. And if I am upset because of what happened of if I have a nightmare I can CYFAR/Community grandma, CYFAR Has an adult other than your primary caregiver made an important positive difference in your life at any time? Older Siblings CYFAR/Community ones there for me. Like they are the ones that he will be there and talk to me and tell me why me like family because he had it hard when he long time (5 years), so I have known him for a o me when I am mad
106 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes because he knows I have anger issues. He calms me down. He talk to me, tells me not to 7. I mean, like they (CYFAR staff) do co nduct lectures and stuff about how to be a good leader and stuff, it made me think about it. Mr. B was telling the class how I was a good leader. He used me as an example. And so, like, then I told my mom and w No one Who is your mentor? Parent/Grandparents (Primary Caregiver) like kind of more Other Family Members CYFAR/Community been here for a long time (6 7 years) and he has been here si nce I have been here. I know she is like my mentor kind of. She is a counselor. She talks to you about everything. She was there for me when my mom passe was when we was coming here (CYFAR site) and then she started I called her mom because she kept acting like a mom to me. And then when she left, I felt really sad. But that is when she and my mom was hang ing out together and they went out to like some dinner together and she invites us to her church and None Primary source of identity Who is the one person you want to be most like? Parent/Grandparents (Primary Caregiver ) like my mom. But in the [other] hand I want to come up as a different person a unique mo Other Family Members whenever I ne ed help she helps me with my
107 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes for me to look forward to when I get older. I want to know I am doing something for my Mentor: CYFAR/Community church) Multiple Persons are three people that I really admire. My first one is my dad, the second is my uncle and the th Self Famous Person NFL Primary Caregiver Relationship Who do you view as the most responsible person for raising you? (Descriptive) Mom where Dad Grandparent 3. cuz my mom has two jobs. But I am mostly with my grandma and she works at my school. She picks me up from the boys and girls club and everything. I go to her house in the mornings. Like whenever my grades are down s he gets to know my teachers so that I pull up Other Family Members Describe the characteristic s of this person. (Explanatory) Positive Hard working skills he is hard Money Cooking Intelli gence
108 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Musical talents Respectful bad about anyone. She likes to respect people and she Job Humor Good advice Communication skills is now, the way they communicate with each Strength get me tough like him because Social Negative: Anger/Meanness alre ady do that. I would say some things that are not good and then I would blow everybody be like my aunt because she has a big attitude towards everyone, like she sometimes. Job spend more Bad Habits
109 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Describe your relationship with this person. (Explana tory) Positive: Ability to confide Not just a mom, she is also a friend and I can how I am. She is always teaching me what to ave confidence in each other and if we have problems, we go to each other and help Positive: Providing for physical needs. they take me places and Positive: Engaging in activities together Positive: Good sense of humor. Negative: Physically or emotionally unavailable Negative: Hostility laughing, she would hit me out of no where and grandpa are like okay because like most of the times I get in trouble and sometimes I get e went down because when I was like 7 she would yell at me for everything that I did so I felt like I could
110 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes Mentor Relationship Tell me about your relationship with this person. Duration as been in my life] ever since I can 3. How long have you known Mr. B? 4. Have you known her because when I was born in Orlando she used to come up there and help my mom take care How long have you known her? Intensity 1. How often to do you see your mentor? a lot! I see her since I go to church too. Basically the whole week. But we changed our schedule so I see her Sunday, sometimes Monday, Tuesday, sometimes Wednesday. I sometimes. 3. You said you see him everyday. Do you only interact with him at basketball practice? invites me over to his house and picks me up from my uncles work. He c alls me to see how I am doing too. We watch tapes of old basketball last summer, I spent almost the whole summer CYFAR 6. Do you interact with him outside of the club [CYFAR site]? Quality Advice/Communication s, she and I can go talk to her. I could call her. I can go to her house. My parents will be willing to
111 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes and always giving me advice; even thou gh sometimes I do want to hear it, sometimes I happened. When I just need to talk to somebody I know I can go to him and I trust that what me in the eye. He will actually sit there and listen to my problem and if there is a problem he can take care of, he will take care of it. at. Most ask her questions a lot. I talk to her about see my point of view. My uncle helps me see wrong. He tells me when I get angry at my dad not to talk back but to just listen. When I need someth ing, or have a problem I go to them and Recreational and leisure activities the playground, we p lay foursquare and we Fun/jo king Caring Encouragement l me about how much
112 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes giving me a zillion kisses on the forehead and stuff and I know she loves me because she is of potentia Helpful therapy session. We do activities for helping the mind. It helps me a lot. I changed a lot. I used to be different but I am not rude and get into a lot of going to pick up trash or giving can goods to homeless peopl Deviant Cases meet her (my mentor) and she never showed up. So I had to go to her classroom and basically I was supposed to be talking about my schoolwork and stuff but she was sitting on the computer. She would have me talking to her and then that was Was this person a counselor? Was it helpful? say his nickname, but he shows me how to hunt, how to fight and its cool. I like it, but my mom and much. I fight at school, home, neighborhood What does your uncle do when you get into these figh ts? and asks me what I did in the fight. And then mentor. He was faking. He liked my mom. Be pretended to be a mentor and then my mom talked to a lady who told her what the man was doing and we had caught him. Then he moved Comparing Mentor to Primary Caregiver If something were upsetting you, would you talk to your Primary Caregiver 3. I actually go to my mom and daddy for their opinion and when I have problems I just go to
113 Table A 1. Continued Variable Question(s) Themes Quotes (identified primary caregiver) or (identified mentor)? if something is really bothering me I tell my Mento r just takes it slow and says okay baby you can en my mom needs her to watch me she does it. Even if she has stuff to do. And 3. How strong is your relationship with your like a How strong would you say it is with Mr. B? talk to my grandma about everything. I told my Both have a little bond going on. So i f I talk to my mentor, my mom is going to be there too. So, I Neither 2. I
114 APPENDIX B INTERVIEW PROTOCOL Interviewers Guide Instructions everything during the interview. Anything you s ay will be confidential. The purpose of this interview is for me to understand your experiences with (Midway) staff and how that relates to your relationship with other adults. There are no right or wrong answers! I value what you have to say and want to h ear all your thoughts and stories! Feel free to ask me any questions during the interview. Icebreaker Tell me three words that describe you, that is, what sort of person you are. (I can Tell me three words that describe the type of person you wa nt to be. Who is the one person you want to be most like? Interview Questions 1. Who are the significant adults in your life? a. and care deeply about you, inspire you to do your best, and influence what Lilly, 2002). b. Prompting examples: Mother, Father, Grandmother, or Coach. 2. Who do you view as the most responsible person for raising you? 3. Tell me three or more words to desc ribe your relationship with your [parent figure], i.e.: mom/dad? 4. In what ways would you like to be like your [parent figure], i.e.: mom/dad? 5. In what ways would you not like to be like your [parent figure], i.e.: mom/dad? 6. Has an adult, other than your parents or stepparents, made an important positive difference in your life at any time (Erickson, McDonald & Elder, 2009)? a. Explain to me how? 7. When I say the word mentor what does that mean to you? 8. Would you call this person a mentor? / Who is your mentor? a. My definition of mentor, if they are unsure: A mentor is as any non parental adult that has taken a special interest in your life and stepped outside their normal social roles to serve as a role model (Erickson, McDonald, & Elder, 2009). 9. Tell me a little about your relationship with this person? (Describe relationship). a. Probing Questions: i. How strong is your relationship with this adult? ii. How long has this person been actively involved in your life?
115 iii. How often do you interact with this person? Are they in volved in other aspects of your life besides the after school program? What types of things do you do with this person? Do you tell this person when something is bothering you? iv. Are you confidant this person cares about you? What makes you certain? v. Does t his person work at the (CYFAR site)? vi. Is this adult a source of support still? 10. Who do you feel has the most impact on shaping your behaviors? a. Probing Questions: i. Who teaches you right from wrong? ii. Who shapes your attitudes? iii. Who do you feel is more influe ntial on your growth as an individual? 11. If something were upsetting you, would you talk to your (identified primary caregiver) or (identified mentor)? Do you have anything else you want to add? Do you have any questions or concerns at this time? Thank you for your time. This concludes our interview. NOTES **The interview needs to be consistent enough to reveal structural variations in response and flexible enough to help children with its demands without compromising validity. A further important difference was that the CAI focused on recent attachment related events and current attachment relationships rather than the memory of relationships in earlier childhood. ***The interviewer will also provide scaffolding to assist the child in telling th e story; typically, this means (Shmueli Goetz, Target, Fonagy, & Datta, 2007).
116 APPENDIX C SUBJECTIVITY STATEMENT This subjectivity statement is included in order to establish transparency and transferability of the findings. The subjectivities of the researcher may bias and lim it the findings of this qualit ative inquiry (Preissle, 2008). I am a 24 year old white female who was raised in a middle class family and now works as a full time graduate student. I lived in a third world country (Belize) during and after undergraduate st udy, then lived in an urban low income area of Lansing, Michigan and currently reside in a low income area in Gainesville, FL. I have been involved with youth programs serving at risk youth and informally mentored at risk youth since I was 17 years old. A wide variety of experiences have accompanied m y years of mentoring. My experiences with mentoring do impact my overall conception of mentoring, however the data gathered in this study pertains to experiences unknown to me and independent of me. My relation ship with the participants of this study was non existent before the impartiality and avoid bias. Furthermore the theoretical frameworks served as a guide for interpretation. Despite demographic and experiential influences, the most prominent influence upon data analysis is my epistemological stance. Ones epistemological stance governs th e way they view everything, including research. What an individual views as knowable in the universe determines how one will interpret and essentially analyze information (Swisher, 2011). I hold a realist epistemological view, which relays that reality and knowledge are knowable and exist independently of personal beliefs; however, human
117 perceptions about knowledge and existence do impact reality (Swisher, 2011). As this study pertains to youth perceptions, my interpretation of the data values and assesses human perceptions of reality. I am a research assistant employed through the CYFAR grant. The specific CYFAR grant through which I am employed is examining youth outcomes as a result of a particular youth connectedness curriculum that is unrelated to ment oring. The reports of the research to the national office does not include information pertaining to mentoring, thus the data is not comprised by any personal or organizational agenda. The goal of this statement is to ensure the study's credibility, authe nticity, and overall quality (Preissle, 2008). I believe that the specific experiences I have had with mentoring fuel the study, and enhance the personal drive to better understand the mentoring relationship. However, measures were taken to appropriately a void any bias that may constrain the results of the study.
118 APPENDIX D IRB APPROVAL
122 APPENDIX E PARENTAL CONSENT FORM Department of Family Youth and Community Sciences PO Box 110310 University of Florida Gainesville, FL 32611 0310 Parental Con sent Dear Parent/Guardian, We are professors in the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences at the University of Florida conducting research on after school programs. The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of the after school progra m on youth. The after school program will be managed by the local County Extension Agents as well as staff at the University of Florida. The program is open for all youth in the community to attend at no cost. The after school program will work to educat e the youth on the importance of community involvement and how youth can work to improve their community. The results of the study will help us look at changes in knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviors as a result of the program. These results may not directly help your child today, but may benefit them in the future. With your permission, we would like to ask your child to volunteer for this research on the program effects and how the program affected them. We will give students a survey before and af ter each session is taught at the after school program. Other data will be collected related to developmental assets computers, completing homework, and participating in re creational activities for a researchers understand changes due to participation in the program. We will look for volvement and life skills having your teen complete the Developmental Assets Profile (DAP). Developmental Assets focus on how youth are being influenced by others surrounding them as well as the importance of school in their lives. Your youth will also be given surveys that study their involvement in their community, their social behaviors, and their use of media (computers, tv). In addition, your child may be asked to partic ipate in a brief interview or focus group with researchers. Your child will miss 30 minutes of recreation and/or free play time in order participate in an interview and/or focus group. Although the children will be asked to write their names on the questio nnaires for matching purposes, their identity will be kept confidential to the extent provided by law. We will replace their responses to their names, therefore keeping your c confidential. Results will only be reported in the form of group data. Participation or
123 non participation in this study will not affect the children's grades or placement in any programs. You and your child have the right to wi thdraw consent for your child's participation at any time without consequence. There are no known risks or immediate benefits to the participants. No compensation is offered for participation. Group results of this study will be available in December upon request. If you have any questions about this research protocol, please contact me at (352) 273 3525. Questions or concerns about your child's rights as research participant may be directed to the UFIRB office, University of Florida, Box 112250, Gainesvill e, FL 32611, (352) 392 0433. Jerry Culen, Ph.D., & Rose V. Barnett, Ph.D. I have read the procedure described above. I voluntarily give my consent for my child, Af ter School Enrichment Project. I have received a copy of this description. ____________________________ ___________ Parent / Guardian Date ____________________________ ___________ 2nd Parent / Witness Date
124 APPENDIX F INFORMED CONSENT FORM Informed Consent Script for Florida After School Enrichment Project Seminole and Volusia County Sites The purpose of this after school program is to provide support for you to grow in positive ways. This means not just as a student, but as a whole person. We try t o help you and your family by giving you a safe place to stay after school. We also try to teach you things that may help you learn certain life skills that will stay with you as you grow up. We hope to teach you about the importance of being involved in y our community and that you are able to help influence your community in a positive way. We have computers for you to use, volunteers to help you with your homework, and some fun activities and recreation time so that you also build a strong mind and health y body. The reason we want to give you this (survey/interview/focus group) is to discover what is helping you and what you are learning. Your role is to help us understand what you may have benefited most from the program as well as what support you feel is available to help you learn and grow as a whole person. We may also ask you questions in an (interview/survey/focus group) so that you can tell us what has helped you develop into a responsible young person. In a few minutes, I will begin asking you a series of questions on these topics. There are no known risks to you as a participant in this information collecting (interview/survey/focus group). This will last approximately 10 15 minutes. Your participation is voluntary. If there is a question that yo u do not wish to answer, you are not required to do so. With your permission, I would like to take notes during the (interview/focus group) to help create a more complete record of the discussion. Your name will not be written next to your comments and we will not identify individuals who participate in these interviews in any reports. Anything that you say during this interview will remain confidential and will be repeated with your name. [This paragraph is for interview/focus group only.] If you have an y questions about the (survey/interview/focus group) later, please contact Dr. Rose Barnett. I will give you her business card before you leave today. Any University o f Florida Institutional Review Board Office, PO Box 112250, Gainesville, FL 32611 2250 Thank you for your participation in this after school program. If you agree that you are willing to participate in this (interview/survey/focus group) and there are no further questions, I will begin the (interview/survey/focus group) now.
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138 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Tiffany Jo Morrow is daughter to Don Morrow and Mel issa Morrow. B orn in Lansing, Michigan, Tiffany was raised by her mother and father in a close knit, extended centered and Jesus centered. Ever since she was a young girl, Tiffany looked up to her fat her as her role model. Tiffany learned the practices of reflective observation, critical thinking, problem solving, logic and rhetoric from her father. Yet, more importantly, Tiffany learned the practices of empathy, effective communication, self sacrifice and loving servant hood from observing her father. The combination of these all practices established a foundation for hard work and exc ellence in every area of life. Tiffany graduated from Haslett High School with 4 college credits and a cumulative G.P.A of 3.8. Tiffany attended Lansing Community College for one year following her High School graduation. During this time Tiffany became in volved in mentoring five seventh grade girls residing in inner city Lansing, Michigan. Two of these girls were raped by their older brother while Tiffany was mentoring them, which catapulted her into a serious of efforts to ameliorate the distress and disa dvantages these two girls faced. Tiffany became involved with numerous youth organizations in Lansing as her awareness and desire to assist disadvantaged youth grew. Tiffany worked for the Boys and Girls Club of Lansing as Through these venues Tiffany began mentoring a school networks. Tiffany was becoming more and more entrenched in helping youth maneuver successfully though their hardshi ps and realize a positive life trajectory.
139 Tiffany was awarded the Presidential Academic Scholarship at Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana in 2007, for her academic excellence. She attended Grace Col lege and completed her Bachelor of Science in Psychol ogy, graduating a semester early with magna cum laude honors and boasting a 3.85 G.PA. While attending Grace College Tiffany took the opportunity to study and volunteer abroad in Belize, Central America. Tiffany spent 4 months in Belize studying at Galen U niversity, volunteering at Nazarene, a local primary school. Tiffany became very connected with the community and youth in Belize and returned upon undergraduate graduat ion to work for an NGO. Through these experiences Tiffany began to investigate the best methods and strategies of intervention for at risk youth. As her investigation and vision to help disadvantaged youth expanded, Tiffany decided to study at risk youth interventions in a formal setting. Tiffany was accepted to The University of Fl orida to work towards a Master of Science in Family, Youth and Community Sciences, along with a full assistantship appointment. Tiffany immediately began building a research the sis study to assess the developmental outcomes and level of influence mentoring has on at effective at risk youth interventions she found that the premise of successful development outcomes always f lowed from a strong, positive and consistent relationship. Thus Tiffany directed her focus of study on mentoring. Her completed thesis was titled, Adolescent Perspectives on the Functioning Mentor Role. While working on her thesis research, Tiffany became very involved in contributing to the development and positive socialization of youth in East Gainesville,
140 an area predominately characterized by low income, low achieving, at risk and unstable neighborhoods Tiffany designed and carried out an art program for girls focusing on individual, family and community development at the Boys and Girls Club This program won a national award in 2012. In the spring of 2012 Tiffany connected with the Boys and Girls Club, as well as the Gainesville Police Department, The Mentoring Center, and Big Brothers Big Sisters to assemble a partnership towards improved mentoring programs in the community. Tiffany began a youth boxing program in partnership with The Gainesville Dojo. She also became part of a team from a local ch urch that focused concentrated efforts on improving a single low income housing complex. These efforts included: mentoring, tutoring, building intergenerational relationships, building up indigenous leaders from within the community, initiating a committee of community members to organize local events and improvements, a As the necessary elements of consistent, enduring and intense mentor relationships emerged not only in her research but also in pers onal experiences, Tiffany decided to commit herself to the positive socialization of specifically the youth in East Gainesville. She became increasingly involved in personally fighting to ameliorate the destructive mindsets and lifestyles of youth particul arly in E ast Gainesville. As this revelation was forming Tiffany was assisting Dr. Victor Harris in teaching his undergraduate courses at the University of Florida and his research on best practices in teaching. Tiffany was encouraged through friends and c for teaching and should pursue it further. With further consideration Tiffany decided that a t eaching career could provide a platform to form strong, positive relationships with
141 multiple youth and convey powerful knowledge a nd inspiration to the youth. W hile continuing to teach at the University of Florida and complete her thesis research, Tiffany took additional courses in teaching methods, classroom management, and teaching in high poverty schools. Furthermore, she sought o ut a student teaching opportunity at Eastside High School. Tiffany received her Master of Science from The University of Florida in the spring of 2013. She graduated with a 3.9 G.P.A. and is pursuing a career in teaching. mission continues to be : To inspire, challenge, raise up, train, model, support and catalyze the transformation of minds and hearts (attitudes, beliefs, ideas, & values which in turn transforms behaviors ) towards Christ