Mentor’s Self-Efficacy Trajectories During a Mentoring Program for At-Risk Adolescents
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The concept of self-efficacy is dynamic and may change over time. Mentors of youth exposed to risk factors are likely to experience shifts in the degree to which they feel confident in their ability to form a positive mentoring bond with their mentee, potentially affecting the quality of the relationship. Based on previous literature, mentors’ personality traits, their perceptions of positive mentee behaviors, and youth risk may influence changes in mentor self-efficacy over time. Our study includes 238 adolescents aged 11–18 years and their mentors who were recruited for a randomized controlled trial of a mentoring-based intervention for at-risk adolescents, known as Campus Connections. We used latent class growth analysis to identify mentor subgroups with different self-efficacy trajectories. Three subgroups emerged: mentors relatively high in self-efficacy throughout the mentoring relationship, the stable group; those high in self-efficacy at the beginning of the relationship and increasingly so, the increasing group; and those moderately high in self-efficacy and decreasingly so, the decreasing group. Greater mentor conscientiousness, extraversion, and agreeableness were associated with greater likelihood of belonging to the increasing group relative to the decreasing group. Greater mentor emotionality was associated with greater likelihood of belonging to the decreasing relative to the increasing group. Mentors and mentees were also more likely to report having a positive mentoring alliance in the increasing relative to the decreasing group. We found that mentor personality traits play an important role in how mentors perceive their ability to serve as a mentor, which may have implications for mentor recruitment and training in programs designed for at-risk youth.
KeywordsMentoring Self-efficacy Risk Adolescents Preventive intervention
This study was funded by William T Grant Foundation.
Compliance With Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare they have no conflicts of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Human and Animal Rights
This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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