Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership


Educational Leadership and Curriculum

First Reader/Committee Chair

Sharon Brown-Welty


Traditionally, students sign up for peer mentoring programs to receive services and resources as mentees in order to be successful in college. Studies have shown that mentoring relationships benefit mentees (Salinitri, 2005; Morales, 2009) while others (Colvin and Ashman, 2010; Gannon and Maher, 2012; Good et al. 2000) examined how mentors received training to support mentees. The studies exploring the experiences of mentors is not as robust, this study tries to explain the self-reflection unexpected benefits of mentors who participate in peer mentoring programs.

This mixed-method study examined the experiences first-generation peer mentors have at a pubic four-year university. Though in-depth interviews as well as a retrospective pretest and posttest set of questions during the interview were used to examine their perceived persistence, self-efficacy, and contribution to social capital of students who participated as peer mentors.

The findings include an awareness of the benefits of being a mentor. For example, mentors gained better study skills while they learned about these skills for their mentees. Personally, mentors became more confident in themselves and changed their mindset when it came to their own educational abilities therefore enhancing their self-efficacy. Mentors did not explain how their experiences are building social capital for their communities, instead, they reflected on what personal benefits they gained like receiving application fee waivers and extra skills for their success. The retrospective pretest and posttest set of questions did show a significant increase in their self-efficacy and social capital.