Nevada State College and Nevadans for the Common Good launched a new mentoring program on Friday, Sept. 19, with a Meet & Greet for mentors and mentees in the Liberal Arts & Sciences Building (LAS). The mentoring program is a collaborative effort between the two organizations, spearheaded by the Office of Community Engagement & Diversity Initiatives at NSC.
Amey Esparza is the Executive Assistant to Dr. Edith Fernandez, the Associate Vice President of Community Engagement and Diversity Initiatives. Esparza organized the Meet & Greet event to bring the two organizations together and explain the reasoning behind their collaboration. Last week, Edith and I attended a workshop on how to best serve minority students, she said. During the student panel, when asked what is most critical for their success, the students responded that what they needed most was mentors. Advocates. Listeners.
Nevadans for the Common Good (NCG) is a broad-based coalition of institutions in the Las Vegas area. NCG has three basic goals: to build relationships across our community based on trust and a willingness to listen to each other; to equip their members and leadership with skills and practices to get results; and to achieve change on concrete issues, as part of their common call to justice. With these goals in mind, a mentoring program for Nevada State College students was created as an ideal way to connect NCG members with youth in need of guidance, and to strengthen Nevada’s future leaders.
Thank you all so much for being here, Esparza said. My heart swells knowing that I get to be a part of this group, which came together organically because NCG saw that need.
The slogan of the NCG mentoring program is, Continuing on a path of success with a guide by your side. Mentors have committed to a nine-month period during which they will meet their mentees on campus a minimum of six times to offer support, advice and direction.
There are currently 20 mentors in the program, along with 24 mentees, comprised of freshmen and sophomore NSC students. To the students who made their way here today, Esparza said, Congratulations on this step in your path to success. Esparza also expressed her gratitude and excitement to the mentors, many of whom are retirees with backgrounds in education. Almost all of the mentors are long-time Nevada residents, and the entire group is passionate about supporting Nevada State College.
The Meet & Greet event included presentations of the history and vision of NSC, a tour of the Liberal Arts & Sciences building, an introduction of Nevadans for the Common Good, a brief orientation for the participants and a mixer for mentors and mentees.
Esparza ended her presentation by praising the mentors for their selfless dedication and commending the mentees for stepping up to the plate. It is often said that the world is run by those who show up, she said. We offered this opportunity to everyone, but you are the ones who took the chance. That says a lot about you, and your commitment to success.