The college’s Pathways Mentoring Program provides support to non-traditional students attending Walker High School in the Puyallup School District. Its primary goal is to assist students who may have difficulties impeding their graduation path.
Students attending Walker arrive for various reasons, such as health or learning challenges that prevent them from attending traditional schools. The students at Walker is made up of “at-risk” youth, Director of Student Life Sean Cooke says.
Previously, the Peer Mentoring Program at Pierce offered services to community college students, but program coordinators have found it’s more beneficial to extend Peer Mentoring services to high school students.
“Not many college students showed interest in the program, so we decided to branch out to high school students,” Cooke says.
Peer mentors also find the task more rewarding because they are able to be role models to younger students. The college to youth program has proven to be a success.
Pierce College has a partnership with Walker, and Cooke says he expects the program will expand in the future with volunteers working with other schools.
Peer mentors spend about an hour per week working with younger students and an hour per week training. The Office of Student Life still is accepting applications for those interested in volunteering to help high school students gain success toward graduation goals. The job involves 225 hours of training during the summer and required a willingness to help students realize their academic goals. For more information, see Aubrey Kreitzmann in room C210.
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