Become a Mentor

The 1:1 Mentorships represents the core of CBO’s programming and are the driving force behind the successful graduation rate of our scholars. Community volunteers work with their student beginning in their Junior year of high school through college graduation, consisting of approximately 1,500 or more pro bono mentoring hours over the six+ years. For students in college, mentors problem-solve everything from issues with classes and professors to roommate problems and apartment leases. Mentors help scholars find internships and jobs while in college and beyond. CBO mentors also serve as cheerleaders and supporters, turning seemingly insurmountable obstacles into small “bumps” on the road to graduation. A large part of a mentor’s role will be to motivate students to create a vision for themselves so they can take charge of their lives and develop their potential.

Mentors join the program each August, which coincides with the new class of scholars as they start their junior year. Ongoing support is provided through monthly Mentor Meetings at which mentors come together to discuss challenges they are having, learn about current projects their scholars should be focusing on, and to celebrate successes. Each mentor is also assigned their own mentor from the Mentoring Committee, so they have the necessary support to be successful with their student.

A Mentor May:

  • Meet (face-to-face) with their CBO Scholar at least 12 times a year while he/she is in high school. Some of these meetings will be CBO sponsored events (museums, sporting events, etc.)
  • Communicate regularly (via phone, text, and e-mail) with their scholar
  • Communicate with the scholar’s parents several times a year
  • Provide assistance in order for the Scholar to meet his/her educational goals
  • Oversee the college application process and help in determining the best college fit
  • Take their Scholar and family to college orientation to facilitate a smooth transition
  • Be an advocate for the student while they are at college and in finding summer jobs
  • Coach the scholar on interviewing and finding a productive career
  • Communicate with CBO staff regularly about their scholar by responding to monthly update requests and participating in mentor meetings and workshops organized by the Foundation.
  • Mentors are expected to be an additional resource for students, not a surrogate parent.

Benefits Mentors Offer Scholars:

  • Help focus on the future and career-oriented opportunities
  • Help achieve potential by encouraging them to see the options available to them
  • Increase self-esteem, self-actualization, assertiveness, confidence, creativity, pride, and self-advocacy
  • Encourage emotional and social growth
  • Encourage healthy risk-taking
  • Stress value of a lifelong commitment to education and learning

Examples of activities CBO does with scholars:

  • Visit museums
  • Attend a sports events, movies, concerts, plays
  • Invite scholar to dinner at their home
  • Get involved in a community action projects
  • Show scholar how to write resumes, thank you notes

In return, our scholars are expected to:

  • Communicate actively, truthfully, and frequently with mentors.
  • Be respectful of their mentor’s time and of their suggestions/advice/requests
  • To ask questions or share concerns early, and to be honest about them, so their mentor can help strategize for a positive outcome.
  • To share successes with their mentors and to speak candidly about school, home, and any perceived impediments to success.

Contact CBO today to change a student’s life and yours as well! Call 847-943-9226 or e-mail for more information.

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College Bound Opportunities