[CCF] Mentoring Opportunity

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Hey CCF,

Last year, Bradley, Cherish, and I volunteered with Mentors for L.I.F.E., a program for students in the Pasadena Unified School District. I personally mentored three 6th grade girls at a nearby middle school. It's refreshing to step outside the Caltech bubble and see from the perspective of tweens who haven't even thought about college. It's also rewarding: Studies show that having a mentor makes an at-risk student 55% more likely to attend college, 78% more likely to volunteer regularly, and 130% more likely to hold a leadership position. Interested in participating? If you have 180 seconds, you can watch this video and be inspired. If you have an hour a week, you can mentor someone and inspire them.

Here are the details:

  • Who will I be mentoring? Depending on your preference, you can be paired with a single student or with a group. If it'd be more comfortable, you can also elect to participate in team mentoring with several mentors and students altogether. All mentees choose to participate in the program. Currently, there are two mentoring programs: one during after-school care, and one for foster youth during school hours.
  • What will we do? This is up to you and your mentee(s). For example, one week, my group wanted to make a volcano, so we went outside and mixed up baking soda, vinegar, and red paint. Other things you could do: Read a book aloud, play sports or board games, learn the alphabet of another language, do a craft. Supplies are provided by the school, and anything they're missing can be funded by the Caltech Y.

  • How much time will it take? Mentors commit to meeting with their student(s) for a single hour a week through the remainder of the school year. These meetings can take place between 2:45-5:00 in the afternoon on any day from Tuesday to Friday or on a few select mornings (Wednesday between 11:00-12:20 and Thursday from 8:40-9:40).
  • How will I get there? We go to the studentsall of the programs happen at a school site. Ubers are funded by the Caltech Y. Also, most of the schools are within biking distance.

Ultimately, mentoring is about being a consistent, dependable friend—not a surrogate parent or psychiatrist—so don't worry if you feel unqualified. If you're interested, please fill out this form by Friday, and I'll get back to you about an info/training session to be scheduled for next week. Let me (or Bradley or Cherish) know if you have any questions!