According to StudentMentor.org co-founder Ashkon Jafari, the grant from DoSomething.org will be used for outreach to create awareness among students and help them work with mentors to achieve their goals.
“Young people possess the energy, creativity, and motivation to rock the world. The grant will help them do just that!” said Nancy Lublin, CEO of DoSomething.org. As one of the largest organizations in the country to promote teen and young adult volunteerism, DoSomething.org chooses grant winners, age 25 and under, based on the overall impact and creativity of their project.
StudentMentor.org is the first nationwide mentoring program to match college students with professionals in their field of interest. Once a mentorship is established, students can meet with their mentor online, by phone, or in person to obtain academic or career advice.
Jafari and co-founder Stephanie Bravo were inspired to launch the nonprofit organization after having positive mentorships of their own. Before finding his own mentor, Jafari says he felt “lost” because he had no one to help him navigate the maze of college and the subsequent transition to his chosen career.
To date, StudentMentor.org has attracted thousands of participants, which include mentors from a wide variety of professions and students at 350 colleges and universities nationwide. Many students say their mentoring relationships have been tremendously helpful in boosting their confidence, lowering their stress levels, and getting useful advice from caring, experienced professionals.
Mentee Michelle Henley, a junior majoring in cinema and art history at the University of Washington, felt that she had no one to advise her in pursuing her dream career in the film industry. When Henley joined StudentMentor.org, she was matched with multi-Emmy award winner John Ridgway, CEO of Via/Novocom. Henley not only gained confidence and knowledge of pursuing her dream, but Ridgway helped her setup her very own production company. “My mentor, John, has been the best resource ever. He has been super giving with his knowledge and I’ve been learning so much from him.”
Ridgway talks about their mentorship by saying, “Michelle is a star and it’s a real privilege to just be able to work with her. I expect her drive and talent will influence the music and film industry and I look forward to watching it all unfold.”
StudentMentor.org is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit that matches college students seeking academic or career advice with professionals nationwide. Any college student, from any school or major, can find a mentor in their field(s) of interest through StudentMentor.org. The service is free to any college student in the United States. The program has been featured in Fortune, CNN, USA Today, and the Huffington Post.
DoSomething.org is one of the largest organizations in the U.S. that helps young people rock causes theleveragingy care about. DoSomething.org is on track to activate two million young people in 2011 by the web, television, mobile, and pop culture. DoSomething.org inspires, empowers, and celebrates a generation of doers: teenagers who recognize the need to do something, believe in their ability to get it done, and then take action.