You've already taken a look around our website. You've heard about REACH and you know that you're interested in helping to mentor kids from New Haven through the college application process. It definitely is a time commitment, though -- a bit over an hour a week, for the whole year (not just a semester!) Why should you volunteer? Here's what we think:
- It makes an impact! Students who work with someone through the whole application process get into more colleges and get more financial aid. That's HUGE!
- You will grow! Our volunteers are surprised at how much they learn from high school students. Whether you're looking at a career in education or not, you will get to look at the world from a new perspective.
- We're #1! REACH is the premier student-run organization mentoring high school students in New Haven. We were founded by New Haven high school graduates, and that means that know the schools and the students better than other groups. We also have close relationships with principals, guidance counselors, teachers, New Haven Promise, the Board of Ed, etc -- you get it. Lastly, we know our volunteers. We created REACH because we saw how many kids at Yale want to work on education but don't have a way to fit regular teaching at a school into their schedules. We're 100% volunteer-run and you'll have many opportunities to get involved as a mentor, project volunteer, or Executive Board member!
What's the Commitment?
What we expect from you depends on what you sign up for. There are a couple ways you can get involved with us (and you can definitely mix and match more than one of them!)
- Mentors are the core of our organization. As a mentor, you will be paired up to meet with a student once a week throughout the entire year. This meeting can be held either at our weekly Saturday Session, or at a time and place that's convenient for you and your student. We will ask you to come to a brief training session to learn some basics and safety rules, and from then on we will be supporting you. We have suggested curriculum for the whole year -- meaning that you can work on whatever you and your student think is most important, but you have flexibility as well. To accompany that curriculum we have handouts, guides, and more. Want to check it out? Visit our Student Resources.
- Editors get to do some of the fun work of the mentors without making the time commitment. As an editor, you will work exclusively by e-mail (at 2am in the comfort of your dorm room, if you so choose!) Students can e-mail us essays or questions, and we'll pass them on to you. If you want to be involved but aren't sure that you can commit to meeting every week, this is the choice for you!
- Project Volunteers are people with great skills that they want to share with REACH. Are you a webmaster? Photographer? Graphic designer? Curriculum designer? Video editor? Social media guru? Something else cool? We want you on board. We'll have you work directly under one of our executive board members.