September 16, 2016
By Pat Roe

Read Time

Mentoring helps students and professionals establish and navigate the education and career pathways that are so critical in college Completion With a Purpose®. So it’s no surprise that mentoring is a key component of several initiatives that USA Funds® supports.

I personally have been involved in mentoring — first as a mentee and then as a mentor — most of my life. I’ve written in this blog about the many ways that mentoring has enriched my life — and the broader impact that mentoring has been shown to have on student success.

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As a Starfish Initiative mentor, Kathy Laderach, right, helped guide Jashonna O’Neal in selecting a college. 

And I encourage you to get involved too. If you’re still looking for reasons to support mentoring or become a mentor yourself, here are three benefits of mentoring that I’ve discovered in my own experiences:

. . .

I often liken the mentoring experience to being on an exploratory mission, helping the mentee to uncover the best path to academic and career success.

. . .

You’ll help build self-confidence.

The experience of a mentor can be invaluable in helping a student who is facing barriers to success in education and in life. You likely have faced many of the same obstacles — and your advice, based on lessons from your own successes and setbacks, can make all the difference in how a student approaches roadblocks in the journey to college and career success.

You’ll smooth education and career transitions.

Your guidance and the resources you recommend can help a student determine a good career fit, and then establish the goals to achieve to find success in that career. And mentors can help students as they network and look for opportunities for work-based learning and jobs.

You’ll learn something too.

I often liken the mentoring experience to being on an exploratory mission, helping the mentee to uncover the best path to academic and career success. And that mission allows both the mentee and the mentor to think through and learn about different approaches to challenges and opportunities together.

Learn more

For more information about how mentoring is helping students reach their educational and professional goals, take a look at a few examples of the mentoring programs that USA Funds supports:

100 Black Men — Offers mentoring-based programs that emphasize student achievement, college readiness, financial literacy and professional networking.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Indiana — Connects students with mentors who help guide the students to become productive young adults.

Pass the Torch for Women — The Project Grow program pairs women who are college students in Indianapolis with professionals who assist them in achieving their higher education and career advancement goals.

Starfish Initiative — Places disadvantaged students with college-educated mentors to promote the students’ college and career success.

Youth Mentoring Initiative — Provides support for students facing challenges by placing them with community mentors.

Ready to be a part of mentoring? I encourage you to contact a mentoring program in your community to put your wisdom and experience to work to help a student succeed.