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Project MALES Releases Research Brief Explores Support Systems for Latino Faculty Mentors

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The Project MALES Research Institute has released a new research brief examining how Latino male faculty perceive mentoring both as a mentee and as a mentor, as well as how mentoring impacts their professional path and development.

The goal of the study is to better support faculty of color in order to meet the growing demand of mentors of color for the rising number of Latino students enrolling in colleges and universities.

As part of the qualitative analysis, the researchers conducted three rounds of interviews with seven Latino faculty members. According to the findings:

  • The respondents’ current value of mentoring is a by-product of the values instilled from Latino/a culture and family ties at a young age.
  • Factors that contributed to the participants academic careers were family support, cohort connections and, most commonly, a faculty or advisor serving as a mentor to them when they were students.
  • Each participant felt the responsibility to pay it forward as a mentor, just as someone had done for them as they pursued their respective advanced degrees.

Based on the findings, the researchers offer recommendations to departments, deans, committees and directors of academic programs to provide intentional support and mentorship for future and current faculty.

“To increase the sense of community of Latino males in higher education, a culture of advising that mirrors mentorship and familismo should be developed,” the researchers noted. “ Academic programs should support and celebrate the accomplishments of their Latino students, faculty, and staff.”

The study is authored by Cristobal Salinas Jr., associate professor, Florida Atlantic University; Patrick J. Riley, student affairs practitioner, Bellarmine University; Lazaro Camacho Jr., doctoral candidate, Florida Atlantic University; Deborah L. Floyd, professor, Florida Atlantic University.

More about Project MALES: Housed within UT Austin’s Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, Project MALES (Mentoring to Achieve Latino Educational Success) is a research and mentoring initiative committed to advancing the educational outcomes of male students of color at the local, state and national level.