Successful Mentorship Transitions
On Saturday, March 27th, we ended our 2020-2021 program year with a celebration dinner. As we bid adieu to our students for the summer, we know the difficulty that “good byes” bring, especially in meaningful relationships such as those formed between mentors and mentees.
It’s just as important to us to ensure that the mentor-mentee relationships begin and end well. In our mentor training, held prior to the beginning of the program year, we discuss the importance of the transition and strategic ways to ensure a healthy ending.
With graduation festivities upon us and summer plans awaiting, we know that our students will take some time to enjoy family or strengthen some of their academic skills. This is why it takes the same level of intentionality to establish healthy boundaries as the season changes for the mentor-mentee relationship. Here are some of the strategies we discuss.
Strategies for Mentorship Transitioning
Focus On & Celebrate Progress
It’s most helpful that as the end of the year approaches, mentors and mentees both reflect on the program year and the progress they’ve made along the way. This is the perfect time to evaluate some of the goals that were set at the beginning of the program. We often encourage mentors to pick a time to celebrate with their mentee in a final one-on-one session.
The EquipHer End of the Year Celebration is designed to celebrate the students accomplishments and raise funds for the program. However, this event also serves as the final goodbye for the year. This is a great opportunity to wish mentees the best for their summer and encourage them to reapply for the program if eligible. Though this is officially the end of the program, we do encourage the Dream Team to celebrate any school or activity-related events including prom, graduation, or awards ceremonies, if invited.
Staying in Touch
If it is applicable to the relationship, mentors can establish appropriate situations for staying in touch. As mentioned above, there will be additional celebrations as students, particularly graduates, approach the end of their school year. For mentees who might require greater levels of attention, it is best to be clear in communication regarding their boundaries.
Relationship transitions can be happen in a healthy way. As a program, we try to encourage these strategies as the program year begins to end by reiterating these strategies to participants, parents, and volunteers.
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