Johnson City Mentor Program
The Johnson City Mentor Program is a partnership between Binghamton University (BU) and the Johnson City (JC) School District. Since its inception in the spring of 1997 over 1,000 BU students have successfully participated in the program. The program's objectives are to:
- Provide Johnson City Middle School students with role models and extra academic support. BU students encourage mentees to develop their organizational, planning and social skills.
- Provide an opportunity for BU students to explore career options while serving the community. BU students act as tutors/mentors and help middle school students develop the skills and gain the confidence to succeed at school while expanding their own experience and career exploration.
BU Students who participate in the JC Mentor program will:
- Gain experience in a secondary school setting.
- Gain experience and exposure to people of diverse backgrounds and ages.
- Learn how to work with, and mentor, middle school students, and be a reliable academic and social support.
- Develop transferable workplace skills such as professionalism, communication, leadership, patience, etc.
A mentor has the opportunity to help a child who may have low self-esteem, social development challenges, and academic problems learn the skills to overcome these obstacles and develop into a productive and prosperous young adult. Studies have shown that children with mentors are less likely to engage in aggressive, anti-social behaviors, or to use drugs and alcohol. You can make a difference in the life of a child!
- Work one-on-one with a student during the school day (generally 7:30 am - 2:15 pm) to help with classroom assignments, homework and studying. After school time is available as along as it's in a highly trafficked area while the school is open
- Work with teachers and school counselors to identify scholastic problem areas
- Serve as social and academic role models
- Provide encouragement
- Serve as a patient friend and good listener
What BU students say about being a JC Mentor
"For me it was a great experience in which I learned many lessons. I think my mentee gained confidence and self esteem. I learned I could be seen as a role model."
"It is very hard to explain what I gained from this experience. I got to see firsthand that every one learns at their own pace. I learned I had a lot more patience than I thought I did and possibly the best part was I gained a friend."
"I have recommended this program to friends especially if they want to be a teacher or if they just want to make a positive impact on a child’s life. It’s a wonderful thing to be involved in something bigger than yourself."
"My mentee has really opened up to me and gotten her grades up."
"I learned that when dealing or working with other people you have to be a good listener and be flexible when helping them."
Reflections of three mentors
JC Mentor Program featured in Binghamton University Magazine - Mentors matter: Undergrads make a difference in middle-schoolers’ lives.
- Mentor 5 hours per week at the JC Middle School (50 hours per semester)
- Attend a one hour weekly seminar and receive 2 credits and fill a W requirement
- Attend all scheduled activities
- Must be a sophomore (completed a minimum of one year of college), junior or senior to apply
- See the webpage on how to apply to JC Mentor program.
- Please note: There is NOW public transportation available to the Johnson City Middle School on the BC Transit #17 line.
- Please be aware that the bus leaves BU to go to the middle school at 8am and 11am, and comes back around 11:30am and 4:30pm, Monday-Friday. You need to call the bus ahead of time to make sure they come to the middle school.
Contact Dara Riegel or Kaitlyn Zwicke at 607-777-5155 or firstname.lastname@example.org