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Congratulations! You’ve made your way to "Developing a Relationship with Your Mentee," the fourth module of the six-part online mentor training series brought to you by TCAM—The Center for the Advancement of Mentoring.


While every mentoring relationship progresses at its own pace, many experience common stages, including forming first impressions, making a connection, navigating through challenges, growing the relationship, and celebrating the relationship before coming to closure. By developing a basic understanding of these common stages of mentoring relationships, you will be better equipped to work with your mentee.


This module also reviews some common challenges that may arise, and helps you determine when to seek additional support from your mentoring program coordinator.


At the end of this module, you will have a good understanding of the common stages of a mentoring relationship, the perspectives of mentees and mentors during each stage, how to navigate through predictable obstacles, and the role of mentoring program staff in supporting you and your mentee.

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A mentoring relationship typically progresses in stages.

While mentoring relationships are fluid and progress at their own unique pace, most typically move through the following stages:

  1. Forming first impressions
  2. Making a connection
  3. Navigating through challenges
  4. Growing the relationship
  5. Celebrating the relationship and coming to closure

Note that these stages don’t always occur in this exact order, and some stages can occur more than once.

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Mentors need to have realistic goals for the relationship.

Many mentors enter the mentoring relationship with high hopes for the positive impact they believe they can have on a young person’s life. These initial feelings of excitement can quickly transform into disappointment if the mentee doesn’t respond with enthusiasm. Throughout the mentoring relationship, it's important to be patient and not become discouraged if your impact on your mentee isn't as obvious as you had hoped. As the relationship progresses, you may find that you will need to adjust your expectations.

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Lay the foundation and set a positive tone at the beginning.

Early in the relationship, you and your mentee will need to build a base of trust and respect on which the relationship can grow.

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Your mentoring program can provide support and helpful resources.

Remember that while the beginning a mentoring relationship may feel awkward or confusing, you don’t have to deal with it alone. Reach out to the staff of your mentoring program and experienced mentors for help when you need it.

Some mentoring programs establish specific goals or milestones for the mentor-mentee pairs. Be aware of your program’s parameters, goals, and policy requirements. The orientation/training that you receive from the program will inform you about these requirements.

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This module will help you better understand the stages of the mentoring relationship and how you can work to overcome issues and challenges that may arise.

By the end of this module, you will be able to:

  • Identify the common stages of a mentoring relationship
  • Understand the perspective of the mentee and the mentor during each stage
  • Identify ways to navigate through predictable challenges
  • Understand the supportive role that your mentoring program staff plays

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To navigate through this module, use the menu in the left-hand column.
TCAM Partners

 

The Center for the Advancement of Mentoring Partners

TCAM is a project of Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), in collaboration with Dare Mighty Things, Inc. (DMT); Dr. Roger Jarjoura of Indiana University and founder of Aftercare for the Incarcerated Through Mentoring; and Dennis Talbert, President of Empower Outreach, a faith-based mentoring program for high-risk youth. TCAM is funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).

 

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) Logo

 

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) supports states, local communities, and tribal jurisdictions in their efforts to develop and implement effective programs for juveniles. OJJDP of the U.S. Department of Justice strives to strengthen the juvenile justice system's efforts to protect public safety, hold offenders accountable, and provide services that address the needs of youth and their families. OJJDP plays a vital, leadership role in the field of youth mentoring in the United States.

 

Education Development Center (EDC) Logo

 

Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC). EDC is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing learning and promoting health. EDC works to reduce barriers and disparities with an emphasis on the most vulnerable populations, especially those living in poverty. EDC builds the capacity of practitioners to reduce juvenile delinquency through strategies such as mentoring system-involved youth; restorative justice; dropout prevention; and prevention/early intervention for youth violence, gang involvement, and alcohol and other drug use.

 

Dare Mighty Things (DMT) Logo

 

Dare Mighty Things, Inc. (DMT) is a management consulting firm specializing in the development of large-scale programs that impact vulnerable populations. DMT works with national, state, and local organizations to develop large-scale, outcome-based social initiatives for at-risk and high-risk populations.

User Guide

 

In each section of this lesson, you will be presented with three tiers of information. The following descriptions will help you navigate this self-guided experience.

 

Media Player: The main media player at the top of the screen is an audio- and video-based overview of the section. Press play to see and hear the overview. You may pause at any time by clicking the pause button on the bottom left of the player. The buttons at the bottom right of the player allow you to control the volume and shift the video to full screen.

 

On-Screen Text: Below the main media player you will see on-screen text. This includes the detailed information you need to know in order to accomplish the learning objectives for the lesson.

 

Icons: Within the on-screen text segments, you may see special icons, each representing a different kind of interactivity. Some interactivities include audio. Note: Depending on your browser, the audio may continue to play to the end of the sequence if you close an interactivity while the audio is playing.

Interactivities List

 

 

TCAM Online Training Series for Mentors and Mentoring Program Staff Terms and Conditions for Use

Overview

The TCAM Online Training Series for Mentors and Mentoring Program Staff was developed by TCAM—The Center for the Advancement of Mentoring. It is designed to be used free of charge by youth mentoring programs funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) of the U.S. Department of Justice and by other mentoring providers and individuals.

 

The TCAM Online Training Series for Mentors and Mentoring Program Staff includes six online training modules for mentors, which are intended to be used in combination with in-person mentor training provided by mentoring programs, as well as two online modules for mentoring program staff about designing and delivering in-person mentor training. The content of the training series is informed by mentoring research and best practice, the expertise of the TCAM Leadership Team, and TCAM’s experience providing technical assistance to OJJDP mentoring grantees. Each module is designed to be completed in approximately 30 minutes, and individuals may opt to complete one or more of the eight modules.

 

Technical Requirements
Viewing and Downloading PDFs

Some of the materials in this training series are posted in PDF format. PDF, which stands for Portable Document Format, is a popular format for distributing documents on the Internet. To view and print PDF documents, you need the free Acrobat Reader software. If you do not have Acrobat Reader installed on your computer, go to the Adobe website and follow the directions to download and install the software.

 

Multimedia Software

The training series contains some links to multimedia resources. To be able to experience the full multimedia effects, you may need the following free software download:

 

Enabling Javascript

To use the training series, JavaScript must be enabled in your computer’s browser. For Internet Explorer, go to Tools > Internet Options and select the “Security” tab; click “Custom Level” near the bottom; scroll down to “Scripting” and make sure “Enable” is selected under “Active scripting." For Firefox, go to Tools > Options > Content > Enable JavaScript (checked). For Safari, go to Preferences > Click Security > Check Enable JavaScript. Close the window and click Reload.

 

Link Check

All of the links in this training series are checked regularly; however, the Web is an ever-changing medium, and you may find that some of the links don’t work. If you find a broken link, please report it.  Note that if you find a broken within a reading or resource on another website, only the owners of that website can repair the link.

 

Course Accessibility

This training series contains accessibility features to accommodate the needs of individuals with disabilities. The developers of the training series aim to achieve W3C WAI Priority 2 level. If you have difficulty using any aspect of this training series, please contact the Technical Facilitator at tcamsupport@edc.org or 617-618-2334.

 

Contact Information

This training series was created by The Center for the Advancement of Mentoring, operated by Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), in the performance of Grant No. 2009-JU-FX-K001 awarded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.

 

For content-related questions about the training series:

TCAM Project Director (ijonesturner@edc.org; 617-618-2346)

 

For technical questions about the training series:

Technical Facilitator  (tcamsupport@edc.org; 617-618-2334)