Faculty and staff mentors needed for new Huskies

What are the things you wish you knew as an inexperienced and overwhelmed student?

The Orientation and First Year Programs team is seeking volunteer staff and faculty mentors to welcome our newest Huskies into the pack and help them create a positive first-semester experience.

Orientation and FIrst Year Programs is looking for faculty and staff members to mentor new students this fall.

Maybe you were a first-generation student navigating college on your own, or struggled to connect to campus as a commuter, or felt the extra pressures of playing a sport as a student-athlete.

No matter your story, there’s a future Huskie coming to NIU this fall who will face similar obstacles, especially during a first year that will look a little different for institutions everywhere.

“Since many components of the college experience are shifting to a virtual format for the foreseeable future, this is a great opportunity to help new students get engaged and promote academic success in the first semester,” said Jenna Pracht, director of Orientation and First Year Programs.

As a mentor, you’ll get together virtually throughout the semester with your assigned student-mentee — or face-to-face while practicing physical distancing, if you both prefer meeting in person.

After establishing yourself as a source of support in your first meeting, you’ll follow up with regular touchpoints to help your new Huskie stay on track, assisting them with academic or personal questions.

“Huskies know someone cares about their success when staff and faculty fill these roles and bridge the gaps to support services,” said Pracht. “Ultimately, this fosters new-student retention.”

Filling out an application takes just a few minutes, and mentors can specify any preferences they may have for their student-mentee relationship.

Visit the Orientation and First Year Programs website to learn more and apply to be a mentor. The deadline to submit an application is Monday, Aug. 3, 2020.

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