The Community’s Perspective on Mentorship through Service-Learning: A Qualitative Analysis

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Mohini Vadalia
Anhtho Tong
Bhagvat Maheta
Gloria Poveda


Service-learning (SL) experiences are increasing in popularity within primary schools as well as post-secondary educational institutions. Youth tutoring and mentorship can be considered beneficial experiences for both SL students providing the service and the community partner (CP) students receiving the service. Although a significant aspect of SL is geared towards the CP, there is a lack of research considering the perspectives of the CP regarding SL. This narrative study aims to address this gap in knowledge by determining the extent to which SL can improve the CP students’ self-efficacy, academic achievement, and cognitive engagement and how SL can be improved in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Intake surveys and structured interviews were conducted with Cosumnes Oaks High School CP students in a Medical Careers Pathway in the Sacramento, CA region. Responses shed light on how engagement with SL affects these students and gauge how the SL curriculum can be better adapted to meet their needs. We also explored the extent to which the COVID-19 pandemic affected CP students’ academic experience and how they believe SL modalities can be adapted based on the global pandemic. Based on the study, three themes were identified to describe the benefits from SL for the CP students and to modify SL to better suit the needs of the student based on their experiences from the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. The results from this study suggest that students believe SL mentorship has the potential to provide mentors who are able to support them, improve their academic achievement, and connect to others from different backgrounds/ experiences. The themes generated by this study will benefit educators who adopt SL into their curriculum and help CP students receive SL mentorship that is catered to their needs and fosters their growth. Within the research community, this study will also serve as a model to inform future SL research study designs to put a greater emphasis on the CP’s perspective.

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How to Cite
Vadalia, M., Tong, A., Maheta , B., & Poveda, G. (2024). The Community’s Perspective on Mentorship through Service-Learning: A Qualitative Analysis. Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning & Community-Based Research, 14(2), 28–49.
Research Articles