Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)


Graduate Department of Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

W. Brad Johnson, Ph.D

Second Advisor

Kathleen Gathercoal, Ph.D

Third Advisor

Susan Bettis, Ph.D


The literature is clear that mentoring can be an important element in the professional development of clinical psychology trainees. In this qualitative study of female graduate students between the ages of 40 and 55, it was discovered !hat mentoring was a rare occurrence. Eleven advanced psychology students and graduates offered perspectives on graduate training through the lens of their life experiences. This study informs us that although women in midlife value education and enjoy relationships, they are unlikely to engage with faculty in traditional mentor relationships. Many women noted that faculty did not appear available or invested in mentoring. This study explored the acquisition of mentoring functions through a variety of alternative sources. It concludes by offering recommendations for future study of women at midlife.