Skip to main navigation menu Skip to main content Skip to site footer


Vol. 35 (2015)

Mentoring Experiences, Perceived Benefits, and Impact on Current Job Positions of African American Accountants

  • Lucy Lim
  • Allyson Clarke
  • Frank Ross
  • Jean Wells
June 16, 2017


This paper examines the role of mentoring among African American accountants to contribute to our knowledge in using mentoring as a potential tool to increase diversity in the accounting profession. First, we test whether African American women have lower number of beneficial mentors than African American men to see whether they both have enough access to beneficial mentors. We then compare the supports received and the perceived benefits from mentoring between African American women and men. We test the impact of type of mentoring (formal, informal, or both) on current job positions to see which type of mentoring is more beneficial. We also test the impact of the quantity of beneficial mentors on current job positions to see whether quantity matters. In general, we find that African American women are less likely to have beneficial mentors than African American men. However, our results suggest that African American women perceived similar or better supports and perceived similar benefits from their mentors. Lastly, we find that having informal mentors and having a greater number of beneficial mentors have positive impact in the current job positions.