Helping Those Who Need It the Least: A Counterfactual and Comparative Analysis of Whether Informal Mentoring Promotes Economic Upward Mobility for Low- and Middle-Income Youth

Citation

Gowdy, Grace; Miller, Daniel P.; & Spencer, Renée (2020). Helping Those Who Need It the Least: A Counterfactual and Comparative Analysis of Whether Informal Mentoring Promotes Economic Upward Mobility for Low- and Middle-Income Youth. Youth & Society.

Abstract

Although there have been calls to expand mentoring as way to redress the growing problem of economic immobility in the United States, no study to date has directly examined whether mentoring and economic mobility are related. Using multiple waves of data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health and employing a propensity score matching approach, this quasi-experimental study compares youth who report having had an informal adult mentor in adolescence with those who did not from both low-income (N?=?795) and middle-income (N?=?3,158) samples to test whether having an informal mentor in adolescence is associated with economic mobility in early adulthood. We find that middle-income youth who report having had an informal mentor in adolescence are more likely to be upwardly mobile than those who did not but the same did not hold true for the low-income youth. Implications and directions for future research are discussed.

URL

https://doi.org/10.1177/0044118X20959241

Keyword(s)

role models

Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Youth & Society

Author(s)

Gowdy, Grace
Miller, Daniel P.
Spencer, Renée

Year Published

2020

DOI

10.1177/0044118X20959241

Reference ID

6113