Mentoring Partnerships for Minority Faculty and Graduate Students in Mental Health Services Research

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Abstract

Objective

The authors developed mentorship programs to train minority junior faculty and advanced graduate students in mental health services research.

Method

The programs target “mentees” in the Southwest United States and offer long-term mentoring, seminars, group supervision, seed funding for peer reviewed research proposals, peer interaction, and weeklong institutes that feature presentations and mentoring by recognized experts.

Results

Evaluations suggest that these programs have influenced participants' career development. Most mentees have continued to evolve in their research careers, submitted research grant applications, and obtained postdoctoral fellowships, and/or have advanced in faculty positions. Some mentees have expressed an opinion that without the support network that these programs provided, they would have abandoned their academic careers.

Conclusions

Future training efforts should take into account a series of challenges and tensions that affect mentees' careers and personal lives, including the emotional legacy of discrimination and historical trauma.

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