Whitman Mentor Program
Mentor Programs' Research Findings
What difference can a mentor make in a young person's life?
More than most people realize. A 40-year study found that nearly 70% of
the kids living in the worst conditions are able to thrive
nevertheless, if they are emotionally connected to some adult and
within a community (Werner, 1989). Child Trends (February, 2002)
reviewed studies of ten youth mentoring programs, including both
national and locally based programs. Their review compares youth
randomly assigned to a mentoring program with a group of similar youth
who were not assigned.
They found youth participating in mentoring relationships were:
- 50% more likely to have fewer absences from school;
- more likely to attend college;
- placed a higher value on school;
- 46% less likely to initiate drug use (minority youth were 70% less likely);
- 27% less likely to initiate alcohol use;
- committed fewer misdemeanors and felonies after program participation;
- 33% less likely to hit someone;
- had more positive attitudes toward the future, the elderly, and toward helping in general; and
- felt they trusted their parents more and communicated better with them.