MENTEES’ EXPERIENCES IN FORMAL AND INFORMAL NURSING MENTORSHIP PROGRAMS IN KENYA PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES
Keywords:Evaluation, mentees, mentors, and mentorship
Mentorship is one to one reciprocal nurturing relationship between a more experienced and knowledgeable mentor and a less experienced mentee. A mentor is a person who has expertise in the areas of need identified by the mentee and was able to share the wisdom in a nurturing way. A mentee was someone seeking guidance in developing specific competencies, self awareness and skills in early intervention. The study aim was to evaluate mentees experience in nursing mentorship programs. This was a descriptive and exploratory cross-sectional evaluative study. It used both qualitative and quantitative methods in data collection where 106mentees participated. Qualitative data collection utilized focus group discussions, while quantitative utilized questionnaires. In quantitative data collection method, simple random sampling was used while in qualitative, purposive and snowball non probability samplings were used to select participants.Exploratory data analysiswas used to summarize quantitative data. For qualitative data analysis, thematic content analysis was done. The study found out that mentees preferred formal to informal mentorship program. Youthful female Mentees were involved in mentorship programs than their counterparts. Formal mentorship program has been in existence for more than five years in Kenyatta University (KU), while informal mentorship program is more recent in both University of Nairobi (UoN) and Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST). Mentees in informal unlike formal mentorship programs reported they had good mentorship relationship with their mentors. Majority of mentees 88% (n = 22/25) in formal unlike informal mentorship programs reported that the level of institutional support provided by the institutions was adequate. The study recommends that, all the stakeholders should be encouraged to evaluate nursing mentorship programs in institutions’ of higher learning. On the other hand, stakeholders should create, implement and update useful mentorship programs evaluation tools. Policy makers should act to secure mentorship programs and produce laws that favor their implementation and evaluation. For further studies, this study recommended, research on comparison of mentees and mentors experience in formal and informal nursing mentorship programs.