Expanding Horizons: A Pilot Mentoring Program Linking College/Graduate Students and Teens With ASD
Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center; Department of Family Medicine and Community Health; Department of Psychiatry
Disability Studies | Mental and Social Health | Pediatrics | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology
A small pilot program of 9 youth 13 to 18 years old with high-functioning autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or Asperger's syndrome assessed the feasibility, acceptability, and potential efficacy of an individualized mentoring program. Youth met weekly for 6 months with trained young adult mentors at a local boys and girls club. Participants reported improvements in self-esteem, social anxiety, and quality of life. Participants, parents, mentors, and staff reported that the program improved participants' social connectedness. Although the pilot study was small, it provides preliminary data that mentoring for youth with ASD has promise for increasing self-esteem, social skills, and quality of life.
adolescence, autism, mentoring, quality of life, self-esteem, social skills, socialization
DOI of Published Version
Curtin C, Humphrey K, Vronsky K, Mattern K, Nicastro S, Perrin EC. Expanding Horizons: A Pilot Mentoring Program Linking College/Graduate Students and Teens With ASD. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2016 Feb;55(2):150-6. doi: 10.1177/0009922815588821. Epub 2015 May 27. PMID: 26016838; PMCID: PMC4662633. Link to article on publisher's site
Curtin C, Humphrey K, Vronsky K, Mattern K, Nicastro S, Perrin EC. (2016). Expanding Horizons: A Pilot Mentoring Program Linking College/Graduate Students and Teens With ASD. Eunice Kennedy Shriver Center Publications. https://doi.org/10.1177/0009922815588821. Retrieved from https://escholarship.umassmed.edu/shriver_pp/73