Mentorship for Equity

Mentoring is a known evidence-based practice that has proven effective in supporting people across the lifespan to achieve desired goals and aspirations.  The GULEND is offering mentoring to all trainees to embed cultural and linguistic competence and cultural diversity in their career and life goals.  GULEND identified a stellar cadre of people from diverse racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds to serve as mentors for all trainee cohorts. 

Mentoring in Cultural and Linguistic Competence for Career and Life Goals

Cultural competence and linguistic competence are essential for health professionals to responsive to the diverse populations that reside not only in the District of Columbia, but also nationally including tribal nations and territories as all interactions are cross-cultural. The capacity to acknowledge, understand, and respond positively to cultural differences are key components of Mentorship for Equity. Given the well-documented racial, ethnic, and geographic disparities in diagnosis and interventions in ASD and other neurodevelopmental disabilities, cultural and linguistic competence is especially relevant for these populations across the life course.

This component of GULEND is based on previous work of the Georgetown University National Center for Cultural Competence[TDG1]   (NCCC) and is designed to support trainees to embed cultural and linguistic competence in their career and life goals.  Tawara D. Goode, Associate Professor and Director of the Georgetown University NCCC and Director of the Georgetown[TDG2]  University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities is leading this  GULEND component. 


GULEND trainees will have the opportunity to be matched with a mentor that embraces the philosophy stated below who can guide them in ways to understand and practice cultural and linguistic competence in professionally and in life.


Mentoring is a collaborative learning relationship between individuals who share mutual responsibility and accountability for helping the mentee work toward the fulfillment of clear and mutually defined learning goals. Mentoring is used to assist individuals at specific stages of development or transition and lasts for a sustained but defined period of time. The mentoring relationship provides a developmental opportunity for both parties and can thus be of mutual benefit. 1  

Mentoring is a developmental partnership through which one person shares knowledge, skills, information and perspectives to foster the personal and professional growth of someone else.2


A mentor facilitates personal and professional growth in an individual by sharing the knowledge and insights that they learned through the years.3


A mentee as an achiever– groomed for advancement by being provided opportunities to excel beyond the limits of his or her position. *

Many definitions of mentoring depict the relationship between mentor and mentee as unilateral. 

GU LEND posits that this relationship is indeed bilateral and mentors continuously acquire knowledge as they support the talents, interests, and needs of their mentees.

1. Zachary, L. J. (2002). The role of teacher as mentor. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education.

2 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

3 Georgia State University, Inclusive Mentoring.