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Why Do African American Students Need African American Mentors?

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As seen through time, African Americans have been at a disadvantage when it comes to accessing bigger roles in coaching sports, put aside from white coaches. People are concerned that there are not many mentors of color. Being that African Americans are a huge reason sports is popular today. The benefits African american children gain from having an African American mentor can have huge impacts. African American mentors are, in fact, great for students of color, but are being overlooked and unappreciated. This has been a current issue for too long, but nothing is being done about it. No one seems to have figured out the best solution. Being that there are possible solutions for this situation, including benefits to why it’s important for people to understand.

The current issue is that there are not enough African American mentors. This is a huge problem. No one seems to bat an eye at this issue, and it’s not being addressed, which is leading to other plots. And what people are thinking, ”I don’t think it’s over racism” (King). Many wonder if African Americans cannot coach or lead a team to succeed, but can only play. Black athletes don’t feel this way. It’s involving more and more. Making this harder to direct, contradicting as to what to be seen but is not going to change, that the black community wants to see changed. It’s confusing, “ it’s a very complex issue” (walker). Hiring African Americans mentors for football head-coaching jobs should not be a problem. It should be the same way as if they would treat an White male when it comes to the hiring process. To conclude, it makes the world think that white people are privalled and they can get what they want, such as top head coaching jobs for sports.

In fact, awareness in the 1960’s raised, due to it being a lot of white coaches and not enough black coaches. People called it “racial stacking”. Primarily when minority groups are disproportionately relegated to lesser roles in coaching jobs. Black coaches were already judged before they were given a chance to coach, which leads to “The perception has been that white coaches are qualified and black coaches are not” (King) its like already having a visual repetition on someone you don’t know, just based off what everyone else thinks, suggesting they still are not qualified for a suitable position, that can have an impact on a variety of players. But Unfortunately, young athletes of color are not getting someone who can mirror them, adding to that. it’s important for young black athletes to have a reflection. The opportunity for good coaches should be available to all under no circumstances. Having the power to empower all the people you work with and lead on a daily basis, being hired shouldn’t be an issue.

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This issue has extensively been displayed through the sport of football. It’s a lot of colleges across the country that has division 1 programs for football, but “Out of 117 divison I-A programs, there are currently 12 black coaches” (Walker). It’s underrepresented, the diversity is worse as the division goes down (D2 & D3). It’s very important to pay close attention to this . Even now, African American head coaches are being put aside, because they don’t meet a certain point of reference — “some black coaches are stereotyped”(Walker). Mentoring carries the assumption that a person belongs in the guild, social setting or institution that he or she is moving toward. Black mentors are looked at as just being an assistant. They don’t fit a criteria to actually be a top candidate for a head coaching position. Most black athletes are in the need of having a Black mentor, to guide them through the ropes. A black mentor could be a father figure to a young black athlete, and becoming a part of something with young black athletes.

Accomplishing a fix, would not be easy. But, a possible solution that has changed the view for people, is Super Bowl XLVII. It was both African American head coaches, coaching a team to a Super Bowl in the NFL, both battling. It turned a lot of heads, and it put a large amount of attention towards black coaching, such as the league started looking more towards Black coaches way for top head coaching positions. One of the black coaches came out on top in that Super Bowl game as well. It was interesting, seeing black coaches, coach a team all the way to the world championship. Something most people thought a black coaches couldn’t do. From that moment “Super Bowl XLVII was a watershed moment in NFL history. For the first time, black head coaches had led their teams to sports biggest stage” (Walker). This was a turning point for all levels of football. The spreading of diversity was finally lowering, transitioning into the next opening season of football. Most teams now, for students of color, has an all black coaching staff, which is good for young black athletes. They can take advice from someone who reflects them. They would be more comfortable with who is talking to them and mentoring. It can identify critical factors that help African American football players adjust academically, socially, and emotionally. It can transition to Black athletes adult life. That’s what any sport is about, it can prepare you for life, it teaches you life lessons and can prepare you for the real world. With the right mentor you can accomplish more, and from the motivation, you can elevate to the next level.

Clearly, the benefits of having an African American as a coach can lead to good outcomes, including building strong relationships. Good bonding with young black athletes is very important, “Quality relationships between youth and adults are a critical development programming”(Weybright). Having good chemistry is what leads to a program change to succeed in the future, due to diversity. In order for adults to be mentors and healers for youth, they must believe in healing and caring for themselves. This allows for more ideas to come into a conversation so that more people feel involved and welcomed. Pros and cons comes with relationships with Mentors, “Not all youth adult relationships equally contribute to a positive development”(Weybright). By having a mentor who can relate to young, black teens, they are more likely to open up about issues and be able to find solutions. Cruel instructing of youthful competitors can regularly direct children from sports by a large, yet on the off chance that the mentors hit the nail on the head, the children learn significant abilities for their fates. At a youthful age, young black athletes need discipline so as to place them the correct way. This control is found in various structures, and one of the most well-known structures is through sports. It’s important to be positive with young black athletes, and teaching them there is more to life than football or basketball.

Therefore, mentors are needed for African American children, but aren’t getting enough recognition. The Benefits makes a case, having African American mentor for black students can be a reflective understanding to all black athletes. It has been an issue that has dialed down over the years. Hiring more African Americans for coaching shouldn’t be a problem. Keep coaches doing their job of creating mature and respectful athletes. Children need these positive role models in their lives. Even if a child has great role models as parents, it is even better to have one outside of the family. A coach can serve as someone that kids should admire, love, and respect even though they are outside of their family. There is a higher probability for success when you have done the prerequisites in developing the youth.

References

  1. Journal of Park & Recreation Administration. Spring2017, Vol. 35 Issue 1, p5-19. 15p. 2 Diagrams
  2. Hughes, Alan, et al. “ black men can’t coach?” Black enterprise, vol. 33, no. July 2003
  3. EBSCOhost. This article shows that black coaches are being overlooked, and why children of color need them
  4. Walker, Marlon A. “Black coaches are ready, willing.. and still waiting.” Black issues in higher Education, vol, 22, no. 6 May EBSCOhost. According to this article, they argue that black coaches shouldn’t sit on the sideline, they are ready to take over a team
  5. King, Peter, et al “The NFL black Eye” sports illustrated, vol 92 EBSCOhost. According to this article, they argue that

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Why Do African American Students Need African American Mentors? (2021, September 23). Edubirdie. Retrieved September 24, 2022, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/why-do-african-american-students-need-african-american-mentors/
“Why Do African American Students Need African American Mentors?” Edubirdie, 23 Sept. 2021, edubirdie.com/examples/why-do-african-american-students-need-african-american-mentors/
Why Do African American Students Need African American Mentors? [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/why-do-african-american-students-need-african-american-mentors/> [Accessed 24 Sept. 2022].
Why Do African American Students Need African American Mentors? [Internet] Edubirdie. 2021 Sept 23 [cited 2022 Sept 24]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/why-do-african-american-students-need-african-american-mentors/
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