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Academic mentoring that goes beyond “homework help” right here in Boone County

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Graduation Coach mentorship is designed exclusively for high school students

Academic mentoring programs typically conjure images of a retired teacher or older peer mentors reading to kids, helping them with a high school chemistry project, or some other specific “homework task.” These programs have a lot of value for a lot of kids and teens, but at the high school level the stakes for some teens are higher. That’s why our Graduation Coach program goes far beyond typical “homework help” and is truly part of a partnership for every Boone County high school student.

The BCMP graduation coach is a bridge to higher education and career advancement

Lori Schroeder
Lori Schroeder

Academic mentoring focused on short-term grade improvement might help a young person pass this semester, but what about next year? What about career development options? What if they struggle with time management or thinking about college or don’t seem interested in anything academic at all?

The Graduation Coach program is headed by Lori Schroeder, who works directly inside Lebanon High School. Her work is designed to help teens successfully navigate all of these questions and go beyond short-term homework help.

In addition to accountability and 1:1 support, the Graduation Coach can break down barriers to graduation. That could be helping them with time management or organization, after-school activities, connection to mentors, college prep, and just listening to questions and concerns young people often have.

What kind of high school students are suited for the Graduation Coach program?

The teens in the Graduation Coach program come from all kinds of backgrounds and needs. Here are some of the most common:

  • Teens at-risk of dropping out of high school. Either because they’re struggling academically, having a hard time at home, or struggling to find positive role models. The stakes for these teens are highest.
  • Teens with moderate to high academic success, but might not have family members who have ever navigated college admissions or higher education. These teens are on their way, but could use some guidance from people who’ve gone before them.
  • Teens unsure what options they have after high school. Life after high school doesn’t have to be “a college or university.” It could be trade programs, apprenticeships, military service, or even entrepreneurship. We help teens see the benefits of these options with relationships that work for them.

The Graduation Coach program works because:

  1. Our approach is data-informed from students in their freshman year of high school.
  2. We review applications and identify mentor relationships that seem like a good fit. This includes reviewing the mentee’s career, the student’s current academic success, and the student’s future ambitions.
  3. Like our other mentoring programs, we’ll facilitate introductions and serve as a bridge with resources, scheduling, preparing for mentoring, and more. 

The Graduation Coach provides:

  • Ways to find short-term homework help and tutoring
  • The structure and accountability that comes with a focused routine
  • A trusted, stable place to meet to work through homework, assignments, and study
  • A long-term relationship to encourage students during and after high school

In most cases, the Graduation Coach mentoring program shows teens:

  • A future career path
  • Best practices for studying and success
  • How to achieve long-term goals
  • Networking opportunities
  • How to improve communication and relationships
  • Ways to make progress in their life, often long after they’ve graduated high school

Support our Graduation Coach by becoming an adult Mentor

Adult mentees in our traditional Mentoring program aren’t necessarily required to help teens with complex math or chemistry homework — though that might happen if you’re able to help. 

Most students just need someone to show them effective strategies, like focusing, blocking off time to tackle the problem, successfully navigating systems, or helping them understand who and what to ask for help- all things adults navigate daily. Our Graduation Coach can start that process, and Mentors can help reinforce it through their mentorship.

None of this requires adult mentees to have advanced degrees or serve as faculty in a teaching program. Sometimes, teens just need the presence of a caring adult who encourages them to grow, offers constructive feedback, suggests things to do, and cares about their success.

Adult mentors are often the best way for college-bound high school students to tour a campus, meet other students (such as your own older children) and offer an understanding of how scholarships, loans, and other financial options work. First-time college students in families often navigate this process blindly. 

If mentoring is not an option for you right now, consider a donation to support the Graduation Coach program.

Mentorship changes lives

Dozens of kids in Boone County are waiting

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