Faculty and staff encouraged to join student mentoring program

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The Office of Student Affairs is reminding faculty and staff that there are still ways to become involved with the new first-generation college student mentoring program.

For the purpose of this program, the definition of a first-generation college student is one whose parents have not obtained a baccalaureate degree. Faculty and staff who identify as first-generation college graduates are invited to join the formal mentoring program or simply identify themselves to the community by posting a placard in their office window.

Research indicates that first-generation students can have more difficulty acclimating to college. Intervention efforts can help alleviate the differences between first-generation and non-first-generation students. This ties in with the University’s new strategic imperatives to develop a “state of the art” student success model and create a culture wherein faculty and staff work together promoting student success.

In the formal mentoring program, new students will be paired with current faculty and staff who were also first-generation college students to ensure that these students are connected and supported at Salve Regina. The goal is to ease and support the successful transition of first-generation students into their undergraduate experience.

Mentors will be asked to have six face-to-face meetings (three per semester) with their mentee during the course of the academic year. There will be training for mentors in late August and a closing event at the end of the spring 2014 semester. Support for mentors will also be provided throughout the academic year.

An online matching application will allow students to choose their own mentor based on a short questionnaire. Mentors will be assigned to no more than two student mentees. The blog site should be available by early August so that mentors can begin to build their online profiles. The goal is to have freshmen access the site before they arrive on campus so that they have a mentor in place for the start of the fall semester.

To become a mentor, or to receive a placard for your office window, contact Jennifer Jensen, assistant dean of students, at jensenj@salve.edu or (401) 341-2209.

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