Cardinal Opportunities

 

Cardinal Opportunities, a one-to-one mentoring program for Upper Dublin High School students, is looking for adults (25 years of age or older) to serve as mentors. Volunteer to be part of this dynamic program by sharing your life experiences and knowledge with a high school student to help them make the most of their high school experiences.

If you have four hours a month to spend with a student and the willingness to provide counsel, friendship, and constructive guidance, you can help a young person achieve his or her potential. After background checks and training a mentor will be matched with a student and may provide many forms of support, such as the following:

 

  • Advice and guidance in decision-making while encouraging the student to make his/her own decisions and to be responsible for the possible consequences

 

  • Career advice and experience to assist the student in developing and refining skills needed in everyday living

 

  • Friendship, understanding, and caring. Being available when a listening ear is needed. Giving encouragement and praise, building confidence.

 

For 21 years, the Cardinal Opportunities Mentoring Program has supported more than 100 high school students in the District through volunteer mentors. One of these graduates summed up his experience: “You taught me that no matter where you come from, all you need is the will to succeed in life and to pursue the gift of knowledge.” Another added, “From what you taught me I can also pass this to someone else who needs help in life.”

It’s not only the students who benefit from the program. The mentors also feel enriched by their interaction with the young people and each other. One wrote: “We have both grown through new shared experiences-sometimes educational… and sometimes just for fun.”

Orientation/Training for new mentors will be scheduled within the next few months, virtually for the time being until we can again meet each other in person. To volunteer or find out more about Cardinal Opportunities contact Sue Diehl at 215-913-9370 or susan.diehl@penserv.com

 

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Cardinal Opportunities is a mentoring program supported by the community at large, the Upper Dublin Education Foundation and Upper Dublin School District. The objective of the program is to provide Upper Dublin High School and Middle School students a better chance to succeed with the assistance of supportive, objective and caring adults.

Upper Dublin High School and Sandy Run Middle School along with the Education Foundation match students with community volunteer mentors. The mentors help the mentees (students) prepare for the world of high school, post-secondary education or employment.

The goals of this program include: empowering students to use their potential, exposing students to options and opportunities, helping students focus on the future, assisting students in exploring realistic goals, helping students develop self-esteem and encouraging enriching experiences

Program Contacts

Sue Diehl

Email: susan.diehl@penserv.com

Frequently Asked Questions

Question:

WHAT OR WHO IS A MENTOR?

Answer:

A mentor is an adult interested in helping a high school student prepare for post-secondary education or a career or a adult who will spend time with middle school students who are not adjusting well to their school environment and need to belong to a group in which they feel comfortable. At the High School a mentor is matched with a student and may provide many forms of support, some of which are listed below. • Advice and support in decision-making • Encouraging responsibility for decisions • Academic and intellectual direction • Career advice and experience • Friendship, understanding, and caring; a listening ear • Encouragement and praise • Confidence building • What does a mentor do? A mentor meets at least once monthly with the student and stays in touch through phone calls and notes. The pair may go to events, museums, movies, or out to eat to talk about what is happening in the student’s life and what concerns he or she may have. The mentor may suggest and help arrange opportunities to learn about careers or educational opportunities. At the Middle School a mentor comes in to the school two to three times week for lunch and/or after school group programs. It's a socialization and self esteem building initiative. PARENTS: A mentor does not take the place of a parent but acts as an additional adult whose experience can benefit the student in making good decisions. Students may only participate with the permission and cooperation of a parent or guardian. BENEFITS: Mentors have the opportunity to gain satisfaction from helping someone else attain their goals. They also are contributing to the community and can have some fun with other volunteer mentors and students. DESCRIPTION: Mentors are adults who have an interest in connecting generations, as well as a respect for young people. They have a willingness to get involved in someone else’s life. Provide support, counsel, friendship, reinforcement and constructive examples in order to help a young person achieve. They serve as a positive role model sharing their life experiences to make a difference in a child’s life. There is no profile of an ideal mentor. Each relationship builds on its own strengths and develops its own characteristics. What may be effective for one mentor and student may be modified to accommodate another.

Question:

HOW DOES A STUDENT GET INTO THE PROGRAM?

Answer:

The program is designed for students who exhibit academic potential, a need for additional direction and a desire to succeed. Students are nominated to the program by teachers, counselors, parents or guardians, or themselves. Students who participate are expected to: •make sincere efforts to do well in school •ask for help when needed •keep appointments or return emails or phone calls from mentors •have some fun while benefiting from the mentor’s experience