Over 60 mentors have joined this network to date. To meet the demand, we are now recruiting another 100 mentors to support the program. The Career Destinations Program, which prepares students for careers and local jobs, will launch a Mentoring Program in 2023. The program will use Chambers of Commerce as recruiting partners to encourage businesses and retired professionals to volunteer as mentors. DCMO BOCES will launch an awareness campaign to inform students of this resource and promote participation.
According to Martha Ryan, Public and School Liaison at DCMO BOCES, grant funding will provide financial incentives for students to connect to the mentoring program, "Students will participate in a Mentoring Track that includes virtual career mentoring sessions, completion of an employability profile, and participation in a work-based learning experience. The student will receive a $250 reward upon completing the full Mentoring Track," said Ryan.
Funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission, the program application also received support from The Foundation for South Central New York and The Greater Norwich Foundation. Funding covers the mentors' recruitment events, but most notably, the rewards will encourage students to engage with the mentoring program.
Jennifer Waite, Director of Career and Technical Education, encouraged participation in the program by saying: "Over 200 senior students are asking for personalized attention and support finding local jobs and career destinations. We invite employers to join this effort and help us achieve our goal of retaining more students in our region with rewarding opportunities."