Research Center

Welcome to the UMASS Boston/MENTOR Research Alliance

In January 2011 Chancellor J. Keith Motley and MENTOR announced that the University of Massachusetts Boston will partner to form the UMass Boston/MENTOR Research Alliance, a first-of-its-kind institute that will support the advancement of youth mentoring efforts.

The UMass Boston/MENTOR Research Alliance aims to create an open and efficient exchange of evidence-based youth mentoring research among researchers, practitioners and policy makers, with an ultimate goal of improving the lives of the nation’s underserved youth. It will be the first center to incorporate and operate as a joint entity with a nonprofit organization.

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Jean Rhodes, Ph.D, MENTOR Board Member

MENTOR board member Dr. Jean Rhodes, who is a professor of psychology at the university and chairs MENTOR’s Research and Policy Council, will be the Research Alliance’s first research director and hold the endowed chair for that position. Rhodes is a globally recognized expert on youth mentoring.

"I am honored to hold the MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership Chair and to work with MENTOR to establish a joint institute for evidence-based mentoring. Our efforts will serve as a vital bridge among students, researchers, policy makers, business partners and practitioners in the field of mentoring.” She continued, “Practitioners have been challenged by the inefficient channels of dissemination of research, and policy leaders often act in a vacuum, issuing RFPs and introducing legislation that runs counter to research findings. The joint center will both hasten and strengthen the exchange of information in ways that ensure that ideas are properly interpreted and implemented and more youth receive the caring support of effective mentors.” Jean Rhodes Ph.D.

Dr. Jean E. Rhodes, a distinguished, national leader in the mentoring movement, heads the research lab focused on youth mentoring at the University of Massachusetts in Boston, and a founding member of 1000 Women for Mentoring.  Dr. Rhodes and her students are currently involved in a range of research projects that address the role of both formal and informal mentors in vulnerable groups including children of prisoners, community college students, high school dropouts, and low-income children in after-school settings. 

Enter the lab.

Visit 1000 Women for Mentoring’s Youtube Channel for video, conferences, seminars, webinars and more...

MENTOR strongly supports taking a critical approach to the task of ensuring that the practice of mentoring is guided by the best available theory and research. Based upon experience and the limited research that has already been compiled, we know that when done well, youth mentoring holds great promise in helping young people succeed in life.

Studies of both well-established programs and newer ones that provide youth with formal one-to-one mentoring relationships have provided strong evidence of their success in reducing the incidence of delinquency, substance use and academic failure. These studies further indicate that formal youth mentoring programs can promote positive outcomes, such as improved self-esteem, social skills and knowledge of career opportunities. Access the most recent research and studies.