The Future of Faculty Mentorship at Historically Black Colleges/Universities

The Future of Faculty Mentorship at Historically Black Colleges/Universities

Cassandra Sligh Conway (South Carolina State University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-4071-7.ch013
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This book explored faculty members' perceptions of mentorship at certain HBCUs. This chapter of the book seeks to briefly review the broad concepts outlined in the chapters. This last chapter provides positive enlightenment on how the HBCU can continue to provide mentoring to faculty which gives the faculty member a sense of belonging, a reason to remain at the university, and a true sense of collegiality. The last points identified in this chapter are to review pertinent questions that can shape the future of mentoring programs at HBCUs.
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The experiences in this book hopefully are those that can give junior and senior faculty unique perspectives in how to be successful at any university. The faculty members’ perceptions of mentoring in this book are based on the HBCU specifically to note how the HBCU still serves as a beacon of opportunities to a diverse faculty body. This section of the book gives a brief review of the importance of faculty mentorship at HBCUs and notes the steps that HBCUs can take to continue mentoring faculty.

Mentoring is defined as quality interactions that provide faculty with opportunities for further professional development and networking. The mentor can be a person who gives advice, sponsorship, guidance, and assists in the process of tenure and promotion (Sligh DeWalt, 1999; 2000). Mentoring faculty is an important aspect at HBCUs. Most of the research on mentoring notes the significance that it plays in the life of any faculty member (Alford & Griffin, 2017; Mullen, 2012; Sligh DeWalt, 1999, 2000). Mentoring has a positive impact on the following areas: 1) obtaining tenure and promotion; 2) research; 3) acquisition of Pedagogical Techniques in the Classroom; 4) online teaching experience; d) building faculty networks/partnerships; e) creating global connections; e) retention of faculty at HBCUs; f) obtaining grants and funding for projects; g) providing university board members, stakeholders, and citizens with information that uplifts the university and community by way of the interactions with faculty members through research, teaching, service, and grantsmanship; and h) developing and maintaining partnerships/collaborations.

According to Sligh DeWalt (2000), the number of mentors and the role of the mentor has a great influence on the professional development of faculty. All authors in this book noted that unique mentoring experiences equipped faculty with research, teaching, service, and grantsmanship opportunities. Because mentoring can provide interactions with seasoned faculty in discipline specific areas, this in turn, allows the faculty member to obtain the necessary publications (e.g., top tier publications in discipline areas) and noteworthy experiences that can lead to many other promotions academically.

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