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Since 2009, as a direct extension of the OCA's Mission to advocate for the cultural, social, economic, and political well being of Asian Pacific Americans in the United States, the focused objective of MAAP has been to cultivate the next generation of confident, empowered, equipped, and collaborative Asian American professional leaders through mentoring, skills-building, and networking. Each program cycle spans approximately three months which includes four one-on-one mentoring sessions and the three half day network convenings on Saturdays, scheduled approximately every three to four weeks. (As part of the culminating product of the three month mentoring process, the participants will draft a personal strategic plan that will "MAAP-Out”  the path towards achieving their personal as well as professional goals.) At the moment, our target audience ranges from Entry Level to Mid Career Asian Pacific Islander Professionals in Private and Public Sectors.  The goal is to at least enroll 15 mentees and 15 mentors in each of the mentoring cohort. 

All great mentoring practice must be grounded in the dialogue, though most programs focus on making the match based on a number of criteria including but not limited to areas of interests, experience, gender, cultural backgrounds, etc.--the participants (both mentors and mentees) seems to receive little to no guidance, preparation, and practice with engaging in the "dialogue".  Since communications being one of the critical challenges for Asian Pacific American (APA) professionals, we as a program have intentionally decided to focus our support in this area of professional development.  While an individual can be matched with one of the most respected, experienced, well networked, and willing mentor, if the dialogue is not strong or appropriately engaging, mentees as well as the mentor may not get as much out of the process.  Therefore, the curricula is focused more on providing as much opportunity for both mentees as well as mentors to hone their skills in the art of the dialogue while exploring specific professional development topics over four 1:1 meetings over the three month period—including sessions on Networking, Communications & Negotiations, Collaborative Decision Making, and Leadership.

How in other ways MAAP is different from other mentoring programs… 

  • Curricula developed are designed to support the depth and breadth of the dialogue by offering a focused structure and a process which takes the burden off the practitioners for planning and gets them right into engagement, reflection, planning, and action.
  • Our program structure schedules more time for mentoring dialogue in shorter program duration—while most programs usually lasts six to twelve months and outcomes for 1:1 meetings are cumulatively less than three to four hours vs. our six plus hours over three months. 
  • We integrate social responsibility into professional development and career planning—which is an added value and a critical gap that we pride ourselves addressing as a social justice oriented organization.

While the program’s design focuses squarely on the mentoring practice between mentors and mentees, it has also been strategically designed to strengthen relationships between the OCA National and the Business Advisory Council (BAC).  And most importantly, by offering such a program as MAAP, it is yet another platform for local chapters to engage with their communities, strengthen existing partnerships, and recruit new members to support our Mission in "embracing the hopes and aspirations of Asian Pacific Americans.”

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