ERIC Number: ED334905
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr-4
An Analysis of Some Pitfalls of Traditional Mentoring for Minorities and Women in Higher Education.
This paper addresses the problems associated with mentoring programs for people of color and women in postsecondary education by providing a theoretical framework for their analysis, by exploring mentoring as a promising tool to help solve them, and by advocating the initiation of mentoring of minorities and women as a policy in school systems and universities. Some of the pitfalls of mentoring that are examined are: (1) the argument that mentoring promotes competition, focuses too much on personal ambition of the individual and promotes elitism and exclusion; (2) the scarcity of senior level, appropriate mentors for minority women; (3) the promotion of the status quo by socializing proteges into the "rules of the game" through "traditional mentoring"; (4) the failure of cross-race/cross-gender mentor-mentee relationships due to personal and organizational barriers; and (5) promotion by "traditional" mentor-mentee relationships of dependency and subordination of minority women, thereby hindering them from assuming the peer/colleague role. Analysis of the pitfalls of mentoring minorities as well as transforming strategies designed to correct these problems, are discussed for each pitfall named. It is suggested that appropriate mentoring is a viable means of retaining people of color and women as active, inside participants in the system. Contains 37 references. (GLR)
Descriptors: Career Counseling, College Faculty, Collegiality, Ethnic Groups, Faculty Development, Faculty Promotion, Females, Helping Relationship, Higher Education, Interpersonal Relationship, Mentors, Minority Group Teachers, Minority Groups, Postsecondary Education, Racial Factors, Social Behavior, Teacher Promotion, Women Faculty
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, April 4, 1991).