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Evaluation of Whether Cognitive Behavioral Mentoring Improves Outcomes for Young Women in Chicago


The University of Chicago Crime Lab is collaborating with Youth Guidance, a Chicago-based nonprofit to conduct a rigorous multi-year evaluation of the efficacy of the Working on Womanhood (WOW) program, a cognitive behavioral mentoring program for young girls.

The current study builds on a growing body of research examining the promising impacts of structured mentoring programs on reducing violence and improving overall outcomes for disadvantaged youth. Previously, the University of Chicago conducted three experiments that examined cognitive behavioral mentoring programs geared toward adolescent males in Chicago. However, little research has been conducted on the same approach tailored to meet the needs of young females. This research can be used to expand understanding of cognitive behavioral mentoring program models and their potential impact on particular outcomes for adolescent females, including justice system-involvement and social-cognitive skills.

This project is funded through the OJJDP FY 2016 Practitioner-Researcher Partnership in Cognitive Behavioral Mentoring Program, which supported a partnership between a practitioner to develop and implement a mentoring program enhanced with cognitive behavioral mentoring and a researcher to conduct a rigorous impact evaluation.

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Date Created: March 16, 2020