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Mentorship Spring Grade Proposal
-- Anonymous, May 19, 1999
The Strive Mentorship Program Ends Its First Year
As the end of my first year of mentorship approaches, I am finding that I have mixed feelings about its conclusion. I know that my Strive student is looking forward to spreading her wings and leaving for college. She has worked very hard this year and deserves to be excited about heading out into the world. Since I last wrote about my mentoring experience, she has updated and polished her resume, attended a job fair, and has been exposed to guest speakers that have been both motivational and practical in their messages. She has a job for this summer that will help cover some of her expenses next fall. She is also a strong candidate for the $2,000 scholarship awarded by our Strive Program to the student who has raised his or her GPA the most from the end of the junior year to the final high school GPA. So why do I have mixed emotions? As much as I know that she enjoys our telephone conversations and Strive breakfast meetings, I also know that she will probably not try to make contact with me next year. As I had been trained to expect, our contact this year, was always generated by me. I will miss the weekly contact with her, but I will try to keep in touch through e-mail and letters.
I have come to feel strongly about the need for this kind of mentorship program in International Falls. At our last meeting, we looked at the list of possible candidates for next year. Many of these names were familiar to me from their days in elementary school. If we can help even one of these students to become more successful academically, then we have reached our goal. The academic success is only one part, however. I am encouraged to see the bonds of trust being built between the students and the mentors in this program. This trust is not built overnight and it takes constant persistence and patience on the part of the mentors.
On May 20, 1999, the Strive Mentorship Program will host its first end of the year banquet. The banquet will be a time for all of us to reflect on the past year and enjoy each others company as a whole group. It will truly be a time of celebration, but I also sense that it will be a bit sad, as we find that we are celebrating together for the last time.
It is my hope that someday the students in the Strive Program will look back on this mentoring experience as something positive that they will want to share with others. Many of the community members that are involved in the program have shared with us their stories of gratitude about someone in their lives who took time away from the hustle and bustle of a busy life to share thoughts and ideas with them.
In this time of student violence and unrest, it is more important than ever to continue programs that bring together community members and students who are at risk. The Strive Mentorship Program dedicates itself to helping young adults feel cared about and worthwhile. I am proud to have been a part of the program this year and I am looking forward to continuing to be a part of it next year.
-- Anonymous, May 19, 1999