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Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering
SJR: 0.504 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN Print: 1072-8325
ISSN Online: 1940-431X

Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.v10.i4.60
pages 377-391

THE BENEFITS OF MENTORING FOR ENGINEERING STUDENTS

Jean E. Wallace
University of Calgary
Valerie A. Haines
University of Calgary

ABSTRACT

The authors examined the benefits of mentoring for female and male engineering students and whether the benefits of mentoring differ depending on the sex of the mentor. Kram's framework of career development, psychosocial, and role-modeling functions was used to examine the benefits of mentoring for 1,069 engineering students. It was found that students with mentors were more socially integrated into their academic programs than students without mentors and that male mentors were more effective in this function than female mentors. Few students reported psychosocial benefits from being mentored, although female proteges reported more if they had female mentors. An unexpected finding for the role-modeling benefits was that mentored students reported less commitment to engineering careers than students without mentors. The authors close with a discussion of the implications of these findings and suggestions for future research in this area.