Dear Fellow Graduate Students,
That's where SLATE comes in. SLATE (Service Learning for Transdisciplinary Education) engages graduate students from around the University of Michigan in direct service, mentorship skill-building, and pure fun as students are partnered together to mentor two middle or high school youth from the local community.
Who are the kids?
One to two dozen middle and high school students who attend after-school programming through the Community Action Network (CAN) of Ann Arbor. They tend to be low-income and identify as African American. One goal we have is to recruit mentors that share one or more of these identities from their own childhoods/backgrounds, primarily because children often benefit greatly from having a role model that is close to them in that regard. However, anyone is welcome and encouraged to apply!
What does the mentorship involve?
Mentorship is not structured in any particular way - however, mentors are expected to serve while keeping in mind the significance of their relationship with their individual mentees. Especially important is SLATE's overarching purpose of eliminating obstacles to children's thriving. Such obstacles include socioeconomic disparities and other dynamics. Feel free to read further research on this.
How would I be committing my time?
You must commit between one and two hours per week (including driving time) to spend time with your mentee, for the entire school year. Each mentor pair will include someone with a car so that (local) driving is feasible. Please be mindful of making this commitment to a child, and tell us your availability such that you rarely - if ever - end up re-scheduling or canceling. SLATE and CAN greatly appreciate your volunteering precious time and resources to make a positive and much-needed impact on your mentee's life!
How can I get involved?
Great question - we hope you do! Please see attached for the application form. Forms must be submitted via email to Aliza Kazmi (Alikaz@umich.edu) no later than . In the subject of your email, please write, 'SLATE Mentor Application.' Please complete the application after finalizing your schedule for the semester. We encourage you to reach out with any questions or need for clarification.
Are undergraduates allowed to participate?
If you know of an undergrad who is interested in opportunities for participating in SLATE programming, please do not hesitate to connect them with us!
Aliza Kazmi (MPP 2016) and Michon Johnson (MSW/MPP 2016)
Co-Chairs, Service Learning and Transdisciplinary Education