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2015;241-257. doi: 10.1108/s1479-364420150000017012.


A B Hodges, A M Wells

UIID-AD: 3871 DOI: 10.1108/s1479-364420150000017012


There is a paucity of STEM professionals in the United States and an enduring disparity between the number of underrepresented minorities (URMs) and Caucasians entering and persisting in STEM. Many of the national initiatives to address the lack of STEM professionals in the United States are focused on increasing diversity among students in higher education. Although the number of URMs entering STEM degrees is increasing, those entering STEM professions remains low. Successful mentorships can encourage both study and persistence in STEM. The current chapter describes some of the theoretical underpinnings, based on the science of Psychology, which undergird successful mentoring models, and includes a discussion of mentee benefits and barriers to becoming a mentor as well as factors associated with motivation to mentor. Theories of mentoring are presented as context for the latter half of the chapter. A guide is outlined for a successful mentoring model students at HBCUs to persist in STEM. Components of the model that are detailed include essential goals, process elements, and content elements. Current literature addresses mentoring URM students in STEM, but does not specifically address working with STEM students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities. This chapter provides a theory-based model for mentoring STEM students in the unique environment of HBCUs. This chapter also highlights Psychology, an oft-overlooked STEM discipline, which has a substantial role to play in framing successful mentoring programs through its evidence-based science and theory.

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