A comprehensive model of mentor experiences: Perceptions, strategies, and outcomes

Lindsey M. Weiler, Kalyca J. Zarich, Shelley A. Haddock, Jennifer L. Krafchick, Toni S. Zimmerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


To date, little is understood about the mentors' experience of mentoring at-risk youth. The current study sought to enrich this understanding by exploring how mentors within a structured mentoring community perceive their experience and determining what strategies they employ to optimally navigate their mentoring relationship. Due to the need to cultivate a deeper understanding, the present study utilized grounded theory methodology to uncover common themes within the experience. Data from focus group transcripts and written reflections of 123 mentors resulted in a comprehensive model of mentor experiences, including a largely positive experience in which mentors hold perceptions of themselves, their mentee, the mentoring relationship, and the mentoring program-Campus Corps: Therapeutic Mentoring for At-Risk Youth. Mentors described a series of strategies utilized during the experience and described potential outcomes of mentoring youth. Results hold important implications for mentors and programs struggling to recruit, support, or sustain mentors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)593-608
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Community Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2014


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