The AOL-Time Warner Foundation recently sponsored a National Mentoring Poll of 2,000 adults in the USA. The poll found that:

  • A projected 57 million adults would seriously consider being a mentor to youth.
  • 99 percent of all mentors already in a formal mentoring relationship would recommend mentoring to others.

Potential Mentors Tend to:

  • be between the ages of 18 to 44
  • have household incomes of $50,000 or more
  • have some college education or more
  • have access to the Internet
  • have a child in their household.

Of These Potential Mentors:

  • 88% would like to have a choice among mentoring options (depending on their schedule and interests)
  • 84% want access to expert help
  • 84% want orientation and training before mentoring
  • 67% would like their employer to provide time off
  • 47% would be willing to mentor a youth online.

Comments & Interpretation of These Data:
(These conclusions have big implications for mentoring programs and are the thinking of the IMA, not Time-Warner)  These findings indicate that:

  • The potential of mentoring remains largely untapped
  • Mentors feel willing but somewhat unprepared to be effective as mentors
  • Mentors expect to be supported in becoming effective as mentors
  • The support mentors expect is an excellent model for our programs:
    • Orientation
    • Training
    • Follow up, expert support and guidance (MENTORING of mentors)
  • Are concerned that the time mentoring may take will be in excess of what they can give without added consideration regarding their own work expectations
  • Are flexible in the means they would use to support proteges.