Mentors, Coaching & Facebook: New Frontiers in Helping First-Gens Succeed

facebook
Jennifer Wheary
October 21, 2013

Two recent reports add to the evidence and provide additional ideas about the ways in which coaching and innovative mentoring can be effective tools to support first-generation college students. 

Students with college-educated parents often have a distinct advantage over first-generation students in that they can draw on the experience of their parents, other family members and family friends when it comes to completing the tasks they need or when they hit a rough patch or need advice.

A recent news article as well as a new academic study both talk about innovative ways to close this gap.

Jon Marcus of The Hechinger Report writes about volunteer mentoring and paid professional coaches. Among the efforts that Marcus discusses is tnAchieves, a privately funded program operating in more than 25 Tennessee counties. The program currently has 2,785 volunteers who commit to working with students through their last semester of high school through their first semester of college. Many keep up the relationship beyond that time. tnAchieves is boasting some impressive successes, including, as Marcus reports:

  • 75 percent of students coached by tnAchieves stay in school from their first year to their second, compared with the state average of 59 percent.
     
  • 26 percent earn associate’s degrees within 3 years, more than double the 11 percent average three-year community college graduation rate for other Tennessee students.

Marcus also discusses other inspiring results, including research conducted by Stanford University that found that:

“Students who were coached by phone, email, and text messages were 15 percent more likely to stay in school…Thirty-one percent earned some sort of degree within four years, a graduation rate four percentage points higher than that of their classmates who were not coached.”

Marcus also discussed programs involving paid coaches at Wallace State Community College in Alabama and the University of Toledo in Ohio. He reports that at Wallace State, the retention rate among coached students grew to 87 percent, about 8 percentage points higher than for students who were not coached.

In a new research study, Paige Ware and Jose Ramos of Southern Methodist University talk about the possibilities of mentoring first-generation Latino college students through social media.

The authors participated in a weeklong college readiness program for students.  After this program was over, the researchers decided to keep in touch with the group via Facebook and other social media. The research study emerged from those social media interactions.

Ware and Ramos engaged in directed “e-mentoring” around specific college tasks as well as offering advice and emotional support when needed.  They used Facebook, for example, to provide weekly posts on topics such as the college application process, SAT/ACT exams, 
career and employment matters and regular status updates through students’ senior year of high school.

The researchers found that the primary value of social media was information distribution rather than providing social or emotional support. Social media was an effective tool to make students aware of important information and to help them achieve very functional tasks such as submitting required forms on time, meeting administrative deadlines, and understanding the process of applying for college. These findings echo those of a study published this summer by Nicole Ellison of the University of Michigan and many of the results of the work of Ben Castleman.

Ware and Ramos found that the effectiveness of social media as an information distribution channel was dependent upon students’ already having an existing network of high school counselors, mentors, peers, and family to turn to for this information.  For students who did not have such a strong network, a virtual one constructed through social media did provide some emotional support however.

Resources:


Jennifer Wheary is a senior fellow at Demos, a national policy organization. She is a first generation college graduate with a B.S. from Cornell University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

This blog is part of the joint Demos and SparkAction project, First to Finish College.

 

Image: Flickr/west.m

Share this SparkAction Link: click here to shorten
copy http://sparkaction.org/content/mentors-coaching-facebook-new-frontiers

MYY
  ralph lauren outlet swarovski jewelry oakley outlet soccer shoes outlet converse outlet huarache cheap michael kors jets jerseys air max ralph lauren buccaneers jerseys red bottoms burberry sale tory burch outlet minnesota timberwolves jersey coach outlet online hollister clothing jerseys from china houston rockets jerseys coach factory shop nike outlet juicy couture outlet roshe run oakley sunglasses outlet new balance long champ san antonio spurs jerseys dre beats rayban ray ban occhiali michael kors purses coach outlet store online ray ban outlet longchamp outlet nike shoes outlet polo outlet store timberland femme burberry outlet online jaguars jerseys beats by dre abercrombie azcardinals jerseys air max oakley frogskins adidas ray ban sonnenbrillen coach factory chi hair nike air max asics pandora canada panthers jerseys mont blanc coach factory outlet nike air force beats by dr dre dsquared2 sale prada outlet cheap ray ban seahawks jerseys vans shoes chicago bulls jersey burberry sale burberry outlet toronto raptors jersey coach store oakley pandora oakley vault baseball jerseys salomon schuhe dsquared2 cleveland cavaliers ferragamo shoes celine outlet handbags outlet puma online air jordan retro vikings jerseys www.tommyhilfiger.nl mcm backpack adidas canada true religion outlet valentino outlet air max schoenen mcm backpack outlet michael kors swarovski crystal adidas online cheap nfl jerseys ed hardy clothing instyler ionic styler kate spade handbags hoodies louboutin shoes oakley sunglasses steelers jerseys iphone case glasses frames tommy hilfiger online new balance outlet softball bats michael kors v?skor hermes bags pandora schmuck rayban michael jordan michael kors bags ray bans barbour jackets fidget spinner outlet philipp plein outlet adidas online long champ burberry outlet cowboys jerseys thomas sabo ray ban outlet michael kors cheap basketball shoes marc by marc jacobs michael kors hogan outlet lacoste shoes burberry outlet michael kors outlet online sale michael kors outlet oakley pandora bracelet tommy hilfiger outlet stores louboutin swarovski australia new orleans pelicans jersey bottega veneta hollister online mbt shoes outlet nike outlet ralph lauren outlet nike huarache coach outlet burberry outlet store nike schoenen burberry detroit pistons sacramento kings jersey replica watches soccer shoes coach factory roshe run nike.se browns jerseys glasses online levis jeans burberry handbags free running ray ban vans outlet packers jerseys nike shop red bottom shoes ralph lauren lunette ray ban cheap oakley hogan outlet ray-ban sunglasses calvin klein underwear tommy hilfiger outlet marc by marc jacobs bears jerseys nike free 5.0 orlando magic jersey titans jerseys the north face outlet air jordan pandora michael kors taschen mcm backpack christian louboutin shoes ralph lauren outlet north face burberry outlet online longchamp outlet jordan release dates 2015 ray ban sunglasses outlet charlotte hornets jerseys coach outlet online saints jerseys nike roshe bengals jerseys swarovski online ferragamo plein shoes michael kors outlet online polo ralph givenchy outlet zapatillas nike michael kors outlet michael kors bags versace outlet online nike air max hollister kids ray ban sunglasses michael kors outlet online sale coach outlet canada rolex watch the north face jerseys from china air max jerseys from china coach factory outlet under armour shoes michael kors new balance nike schuhe mcm handbags ralph lauren michael kors rams jerseys philadelphia 76ers jerseys broncos jerseys true religion jeans women denver nuggets jerseys purses and handbags the north face golden state warriors jersey ray ban wayfarer nike free run oakley sunglasses cheap prada outlet michael kors katespade los angeles clippers jersey beats headphones longchamp outlet nike air max brooklyn nets jerseys jimmy choo shoes gafas oakley polo ralph hogan coach purses outlet online converse sneakers patriots jerseys nike air max shoes northface north face jackets north face indoor soccer shoes new balance purses and handbags michael kors outlet online sale ralph lauren washington wizards jersey michael kors uk polo ralph lauren oakley sunglasses wholesale clothing ralph lauren polo burberry sale new balance canada bills jerseys adidas superstar dallas mavericks jerseys barbour factory heat jerseys giants jerseys nike air max michael kors canada michael kors outlet nike.dk ralph lauren outlet online knockoff handbags coach outlet coach outlet online nfl jerseys utah jazz jersey mizuno wave omega watches oklahoma city thunder jersey puma outlet fossil uhren polo ralph lauren outlet online coach outlet online true religion adidas superstar giuseppe zanotti sneakers prada shoes air jordan shoes ralph lauren outlet hollisterco redskins jerseys cheap true religion michael kors handbags chiefs jerseys louboutin shoes prada michael kors bags longchamp reebok lions jerseys chargers jerseys baseball jerseys converse chucks ralph lauren outlet air max shoes barbour jackets outlet nike air max 90 tommy hilfiger ray ban zonnebril omega watches true religion jeans burberry outlet online jerseys from china oakley sungalsses outlet falcons jerseys boots on sale supra footwear rolex chi flat iron oakley sunglasses outlet converse shoes north face outlet nike air max adidas superstar north face backpacks lunette ray ban memphis grizzlies jersey armani outlet hugo boss shop bcbg max azria nike air max thea fivefingers prada sunglasses cheap oakley sunglasses oakley sunglasses atlanta hawks jerseys nike shoes juicy couture handbags jordan retro barbour outlet vans schuhe jordans rolex watches milwaukee bucks jersey woolrich outlet burberry online shop coach outlet online hilfiger online shop christian louboutin mcm bags nike roshe phoenix suns jersey new york knicks ralph lauren polos nike store oakley vault hermes belt ralph lauren outlet michael kors outlet online sale coach black friday salvatore ferragamo raiders jerseys portland trail blazers jersey lakers jerseys nba jerseys burberry outlet nike shoes 49ers jerseys oakley canada asics gel hollister kids dolphins jerseys eagles jerseys montre homme celine bags hollister clothing store supra footwear ecco outlet longchamp handbags air huarache nike mercurial vapor polo ralph lauren outlet thomas sabo uk pandora charms nike tn ray bans outlet the north face tracksuits store nike shoes nike air jordan fendi handbags adidas.se nike roshe ferragamo shoes boston celtics jersey nfl jerseys coach outlet online baseball bats nike shoes oakley nike free 5.0 swarovski jewelry bcbg max nike free 5.0 katespade michael kors outlet online jimmy choo outlet rolex watches for sale ravens jerseys michael kors outlet tommy hilfiger michael kors canada hermes wedding dresses timberland boots true religion jeans outlet watches canada ray bans ralph lauren factory store cheap oakley indiana pacers jersey ray ban wayfarer swarovski veneta cheap michael kors oakley outlet air max 2015 ray ban outlet kate spade outlet online chrome hearts air max babyliss pro barbour outlet christian louboutin shoes longchamp taschen timberland outlet colts jerseys iphone 5s cases timberland shoes stephen curry shoes ralph lauren outlet online michael kors replica watches reloj baseball jerseys roshe run giuseppe shoes air yeezy shoes texans jerseys

July 22 at 02:51am

We'd like to reprint this article in our non-profit's magazine. How do we gain permission? We'll cite the original source, and include the author profile.

November 9 at 09:16am

connect

receive our updates

Spark Tweets