Mentoring Tomorrow’s Leaders (MTL) is a dropout prevention, educational re-engagement, and student leadership program that is based on five pillars. The five pillars of this High School Graduation Initiative are:
1. Academic Achievement –Ninth (9th) and tenth (10th) graders who earned below a 2.0 grade point average attend study hall sessions where they are assigned a caring adult-an Academic Coach-and student mentors for ongoing support. Together they create a quiet, supportive, welcoming, and structured study hall environment where students can complete their homework, study, check their grades, and work together to resolve conflicts that are hindering their academic progress. Mentors and mentees are also exposed to Success Highways, a curriculum that builds resilience and leads to high school graduation, as well as College Summit’s freshmen curriculum – Clean Slate, a curriculum that inspires all students to consider going to college after high school and assists with the college application process.
2. Mentoring – High achieving (GPA 3.0 or above) upperclassmen with demonstrated leadership skills participate in a two-year mentor relationship with students who have earned a GPA lower than 2.0. This is a structured relationship that is facilitated by MTL program staff. All MTL students are exposed to adult role models and mentors from the community during monthly workshops, and from interacting with guest speakers who take part in the MTL Career and College Exploration Series. Monthly parent education workshops to cover topics such as Graduation Requirements, Grading, Stages of Adolescent Development, Academic Needs of Adolescents, etc. Parent workshops to address parental needs such as Employability Training, Managing Stress, and literacy classes will also be offered while simultaneously developing parent leaders.
3. Family Involvement – MTL Parents and Guardians attend monthly parent education workshops to cover topics such as graduation requirements, grading, stages of adolescent development, academic needs of adolescents, etc. Parent workshops to address parental needs such as employability training, managing stress, literacy classes will also be offered while simultaneously developing parent leaders.
4. Community Support – Community members volunteer to serve as adult mentors and role models, presenters at parent and student workshops, guest speakers through the College and Career Exploration Series, as well as donors, sponsors and members of the MTL Advisory Board.
5. Incentives – Program participants earn several incentives as they work to improve their grades and meet high school graduation requirements. Student mentors also earn incentives as they inspire their peers to achieve academic excellence. These incentives include recognition within the school and community, visits to local colleges and post-secondary institutions, and an all-expenses paid Tri-State College Tour