Friday, July 1st, 2011
Being able to have the opportunity to mentor has been the most wondrous experience of my life. I have been blessed to mentor amazing students. They are the future of communication; they will carry on the legacy of everyone’s right to have a voice. I have been working as a mentor for many moons and I think we have all helped one another find our voices. It is important to me to lead by example. I want each of my mentees (5 students in junior high and high school) to know it is critical to exercise their right to vote. Let your voice be heard by going to the voting booth. Learn who our political heroes are by talking to them. Tell your stories.
I wish in my heart that I had a mentor when I was in school but now I look back and realize I can’t dwell on the what-ifs. I think all schools should be more open to building mentoring with us because we have mighty stories and excellent wisdom to share. What comes to mind when I think of what it is to be a mentor is possessing the perseverance to be a leader to those in need of guidance and purpose. I have found my purpose in life; it is to be a teacher, a mentor or a resource to share with others.
You may think the cards we have been dealt are rather lousy at times but part of being a good mentor is thinking beyond and using our experiences to educate and inspire. I am not in a place to instruct students on their life goals, however I can share with them thoughts of encouragement to help them on their path.
Throwing out my pebbles of intelligent thinking to others, creating ripples, building the tide of change is how I view mentoring. I encourage you, self advocates, to try throwing out your own tiny pebble of help to others. It will not only help others it will make you more happy than you imagine.
Now I pass the baton to my students who have taught me how to be patient, kinder and have given me hope for the future.