The longitudinal evaluation of the Young Women Leaders Program was a mixed methods examination of the long-term impact of the mentoring program on participating girls. The program combines group and one-on-one mentoring between college women mentors and at-risk 7th grade girls. The pairs participated in structured group activities and one-on-one mentoring in an afterschool setting. Girls involved in the mentoring program were identified by their schools as at-risk for social, behavioral, academic, or emotional risk. OJJDP funded researchers from the University of Virginia to collect additional data, examine both the long-term outcomes of the program 5 years after the girls ended their participation, and explore the processes and characteristics of the mentoring relationships that may influence program impacts.
OJJDP funded this project under the OJJDP FY 2013 Mentoring Best Practices Research program. The solicitation program focused on augmenting or extending the followup period for mentoring research studies to enhance understanding of how programs may affect outcomes into later adolescence, including justice system involvement.
Goals and Objectives:
The goal of the evaluation was to provide greater understanding of potential long term impacts of a targeted, combined group and one-on-one mentoring approach for girls. In the original study, girls were randomly selected to receive the mentoring or to be in the control group (who did not participate in the program).
Under the OJJDP-funded follow-up, the researchers surveyed the girls 5 years later, which was the end of high school for most participants, and collected school records. Researchers also interviewed a subsample of mentors and mentees who reported the highest and lowest relational satisfaction at the end of the original study. The researchers' analyses compared treatment and control groups, and they conducted several qualitative and mixed methods analyses to inform practice and explore underlying processes.
The researchers completed data collection and analysis in 2017. OJJDP expects to post a final technical report in 2018.
Barbara Tatem Kelley, Social Science Analyst
Barbara.Kelley@usdoj.gov | 202-616-9517