ERIC Number: ED223944
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Mentors: A Debt Due from Present to Future Generations.
Yoder, Janice D.; And Others
Research has shown that an active mentor can facilitate the career development of the neophyte. The hypothesis was tested that the failure of women to sponsor others, i.e., to assume a mentor role, is the logical outcome of situational pressures exerted on all persons who fill, and succeed in, a token role, rather than merely how women act when they become successful. Female subjects (N=62), who had just graduated as members of the first coeducational class at West Point, responded to a 1-hour, unstructured interview. Subjects were asked to recall their interactions with incoming freshmen women at the beginning of their sophomore year. Results showed that the sophomore women failed to offer help to the freshmen women. Findings suggest that, separated by only 1 year at the Academy, the major difference between these two groups was the hard-earned, yet marginal and constantly questioned peer acceptance the sophomore women had won from the dominant male group. Findings also suggest that the "exception that proved the rule" was the all-women athletic teams where freshmen cadets experienced a temporary reprieve from tokenism and competition with mates, and women reported helping other women. The results support the hypothesis that the failure of token women just one step ahead of the newcomer to act as mentors is the result of situational constraints inherent in the role of the double-deviant. (PAS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Military Academy (West Point) NY
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association (90th, Washington, DC, August 23-27, 1982).