"Concern about the career advancement of female and minority servicemembers cuts across several MLDC [Military Leadership Diversity Commission] charter tasks. One of the ways in which organizations, including the Services, address issues of career advancement and demographic diversity is through the development of mentoring programs. During the November 2009 MLDC meeting, Service representatives presented briefings that addressed the role of mentoring programs in improving the diversity of future leadership in their Services. This issue paper summarizes the information provided in those November briefings and adds supplemental, publicly available information on the Service programs. Overall, the briefings and supplemental information showed that the Services believe that mentoring can address diversity by providing all members with equal access to mentors, and both the Navy and the Coast Guard clearly connect their mentoring programs to their diversity strategies. The briefings and supplemental information also showed that, across the Services, mentoring programs varied in terms of their level of development and degree of formality for mentoring relationships. Perhaps most importantly, we do not know whether and how the Services' mentoring programs are meeting either their goal of supplying equal access to mentors or their ultimate goal of improving the career advancement of all servicemembers-- women, minorities, and white men alike."
Military Leadership Diversity Commission Issue Paper No. 33
Department of Defense Office of Diversity Management and Equal Opportunity: http://diversity.defense.gov/