Although Black women have made progress in securing administrative positions, historically, they remain underrepresented at the highest levels in American postsecondary institutions (Hamilton, 2004; Howard-Vital & Morgan, 1993; Moses, 1989). Lack of networking, few positive role models, and inadequate mentoring are reasons cited as explanations as to why African American women have limited opportunities for career advancement (Searby & Tripses, 2006). Many Black female mid-level administrators currently face limited opportunities for career advancement due to inadequate opportunities to interact within the greater context of the academy by virtue of their history, race and gender (Collins, 2001).
This qualitative, phenomenological study examined mentoring relationships associated with African American female mid-level administrators' career development experiences, including the relevance of the mentor's race and gender. Additionally, issues of barriers and challenges as well as sources of support were examined. Thirteen African American females who worked in the California Community College System with titles of director, assistant dean, associate dean, and dean participated in face-to-face, semi-structured interviews. The findings indicated that African American female mid-level administrators preferred informal mentor relationships to formal mentor relationships. While the race and gender of the mentor was not a factor, psychosocial support was preferred from mentors over career development support. Findings also determined that numerous barriers prevented the mid-level administrators from advancing in their careers. Black Women's Support networks are necessary and offer tools for the survival of the African American female mid-level administrator.
|School:||California State University, Fullerton|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 76/06(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Higher Education Administration, Educational leadership, Higher education|
|Keywords:||Black Women, Career Advancement, Mentoring, Mid-Level Administrators, Race, Gender and Mentoring, Women and Men Mentoring|
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