Mentoring and supportive networks for women of color in academe

Gaëtane Jean-Marie, Jeffrey S. Brooks

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


As more women faculty of color enter the professoriate, they are evaluating, clashing with, and challenging old practices, while simultaneously articulating and establishing new ones (James & Farmer, 1993). To do so effectively, these women are best served by a network of mentors (Baugh & Scandura, 1999; Higgins & Kram, 2001) who can facilitate their development of career competencies, help them understand "the rules of the game" for scholarly activity, and transform the normalized construction of academic environments that is sometimes exclusionary of women faculty of color (Tillman, 2001; Young & Brooks, 2008). Mentoring networks are vital support structures in a successful academic career, as emerging scholars seek to navigate the complex and protean racial and gender dynamics of academic institutions (Sorcinelli & Yun, 2007). In this chapter, we explore issues of acclimatization of women new to the professoriate, with a particular focus on developing and sustaining effective mentoring networks for women of color. Furthermore, we examined extant research to gain insights on how women new to academe can build mentoring networks to create peer communities that advance scholarship and teaching, provide useful advice on tenure and promotion, help scholars balance personal and professional roles, and manage time. The following broad questions guided our chapter: (1) What types of mentors and mentoring relationships should early career women of color faculty should seek? (2) How are norms between protégés and mentors created, reinforced and sustained? and (3) What are the benefits of same-race/same-gender mentorships and cross-race/cross-gender mentorships?

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWomen of Color in Higher Education: Changing Directions and New Perspectives
EditorsGaëtane Jean-Marie, Brenda Lloyd-Jones
Place of PublicationBingley UK
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Limited
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)9781780521824
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameDiversity in Higher Education
PublisherEmerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN (Print)1479-3644

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