FEMALE OFFICER RETENTION IN THE MARINE CORPS: AN EXPLORATORY STUDY OF EARLY SUPERVISORS AND MENTORS
Allen, Stefanie V.
DiRenzo, Marco S.
Aten, Kathryn J.
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This study examines mentorship experienced by female Marine Corps officers and its influences on career decisions, with a particular focus on retention. The Marine Corps recently stated its desire to increase the percentage of female Marines from 8% to 10%. This new goal might be attained through a more robust recruiting strategy; however, if the number of female Marines who attrite upon their initial contract remains constant, the organization will face difficulties meeting this goal, especially among the higher ranks. Based on the grounded research revealing the benefits of mentoring to organizations and individuals, this study looks at how mentorship affects female Marine Corps officers, how frequent mentorship occurs, and how it affects their career decisions. The researcher conducted 17 one-on-one interviews with female officers who previously and currently serve on active duty in the Marine Corps. The findings reveal that there is a lack of career mentorship and a lack of role models in regard to family management, and job satisfaction and work-family conflict are the biggest factors in determining female Marine Corps officer retention. The principal recommendation is to create a network for Marines to connect with a mentor who possesses similar interests and is willing to advise.
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