The design and implementation of a mentoring program in a school/business collaborative

Peter Kaufman, Fordham University


This study examines a school/business collaboration which launched a public alternative high school, the Metropolitan Corporate Academy. It examined that partnership through the "lens" of an academic mentoring program. The study depicted the effects of the mentoring program on mentors, mentees, and each of the three institutions: the Metropolitan Corporate Academy; Goldman, Sachs and Company; and Cities in Schools. An ethnographic design was used in this single case study to document the mission, leadership, and organizational structure of each institution in order to examine the potential for the success of this collaboration. Triangulation data were gathered through the use of participant observation, interviews, and document analysis. The results indicated that the partnership has been successful because the goals and mission and organizational structures of the three institutions intersected in significant areas. The study also indicated that the mentoring program has been more successful in the latter two years of the school's 4-year existence due to the growth and maturity of the school's programs and personnel, and the ability to evaluate itself more objectively and comprehensively. The study recommends that potential collaborators prepare a blueprint for the partnership which outlines goals, responsibilities, evaluation methods, and accountability criteria for each partner. In addition, the study recommends that partnerships engaging in external learning provide support systems for all participants and a processing curriculum for all students. While this study examined the effects of the mentoring program on both sides of the collaboration, further research is recommended which focuses on evaluation of the role and contribution of private sector partners. If school/business partnerships are to become a major educational strategy, the private sector must be prepared to be held as accountable as its public sector partners.

Subject Area

School administration|Curricula|Teaching|Business community|Secondary education

Recommended Citation

Kaufman, Peter, "The design and implementation of a mentoring program in a school/business collaborative" (1997). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9824343.