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Criminal Justice


Jessie Lee


The purpose of this phenomenological qualitative study was to examine the lived experiences, and the impact mentoring has on at-risk youths between the ages of 11-14 years of age in afterschool programs in the southeast region of the United States. It addresses if afterschool mentoring programs reduce juvenile delinquency in at-risk youths. The theoretical framework of this qualitative study is Bandura’s social learning theory in which individuals have a chance to reproduce a desirable behavior outcome. The social learning theory suggests that when exposing at-risk youths to positive behaviors, they have a lower probability of engaging in delinquent activities. The participants for this research were 7 instructors who work directly with at-risk youths in an afterschool program and serve as mentors. The researcher acquired data from qualitative interviews. The results indicated that the afterschool mentoring program provided growth opportunities and increased academic achievements to youths in a safe environment. To improve outcomes, the participants indicated they encouraged the children to take responsibility for their success and to reach for that success regardless of the challenges that they faced. There were no questions asked about funding, but limited funding was a topic throughout the interview. The study’s may be used to provide guidance and directions to the Program Director about the significance of the afterschool program. Evidence shown in the results of the study was the benefits of the afterschool programs and how important it was for student engagement when evaluating the student’s outcome.

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