Student mentors are current high school juniors & seniors who require additional credit in order to graduate on time. The credits earned through participation in Root to Rise may be those that help the student achieve the credit minimum required to graduate. The high school mentor gains necessary academic credit, content mastery through teaching, leadership and teaching skills, and confidence that will help them in whatever path they choose after high school. Our most marginalized students need to feel the power and connection of community. This is a leadership experience that can replace something that may feel remedial and exchange it for something that fills the individual with pride. Finally, this work-like experience will provide extra money and something that the student can cite on a resume or job application.
Here are some quotes from recent participants:
"I was one of the kids they said was not going to graduate. I came into senior year and I had the best time of my life. I had friends, I had brothers with me, and I had this classroom to help me out. It made me a way better person." - Lewis S.
"It got me thinking, 'Should I be a teacher?' Wow, these kids respect me, ya know? That meant a lot at the end of the day." - Joe T.