Mentors will walk alongside students as they personally explore their calling!
Hello! My name is Christa Follette and I am the Mentor Coordinator Intern for Kaleo Academy. I am excited to step into this role to support, encourage, and obtain feedback from the program’s mentors. Mentoring is vital to the growth of people of all ages, especially youth and young adults. I have been mentored formally and informally for the past 8 years of my life, have mentored others, and I currently serve as a Resident Assistant in the Freshman Residence Halls at Friends University, a position that creates space for intentional mentoring. I look forward to connecting with the mentors and supporting them as they serve in this crucial role for their mentees. I will be sending out a monthly newsletter for the mentors with encouragement, affirmation, and tips for connecting with their student. My set office hours will be:
Monday 9:00-9:45 AM
Tuesday 7:00-8:00 PM
Thursday 1:00-2:30 PM
If for some reason after perusing this page you still have questions or are unsure about anything, just let me know!
Contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are some things to consider when choosing your mentor:
- First, you will not be doing this alone! Choosing a mentor will take place alongside a pastoral leader from your home church, as well as with your parent's support and guidance.
- Pray as you begin the process. Pray that God will bring someone to mind or lead you to the best mentor possible in your local area.
- Make a list of anyone who has had an impact on your life, especially spiritually. Who is someone you connect with, respect, and enjoy spending time with that is four or more years older than you? Who is a Christian in your church or community that you look up to? Is there someone you already go to for advice outside of your family or friends?
- Note: Your mentor can be a relative, but preferably not a parent or sibling. We recommend finding someone of your same gender.
- Consider their phase of life: Some people are in a place where it may not be wise to mentor. If they just had a child or have several kids of their own, if they recently suffered a life altering event such as a death or job change, if they are over-committed already, mentoring might be too much. However, don’t count them out because you THINK they won’t be able to. Just keep it in mind.
- Think beyond your youth leader: Not that they aren’t awesome, but they are investing in many lives of those in your youth group. They may feel overwhelmed by entering an in-depth mentoring relationship while also leading your group.
- Trustworthy, consistent, affirming, believes in you, accepting, fun, admirable, positive, transparent, good listener, respectful, high values, strong spiritual life.
Do NOT worry about:
- Finding someone who is perfect, someone you have everything in common with, being close already (though this can be helpful), someone your age or near your age.
- Once you know who you want to approach, schedule a time where you can talk one-on-one.
- During your meeting: Tell them about Kaleo Academy! What is this program, why are you applying, what do you hope to gain from the experience? Show them a brochure or the website while you are together.
- Explain the mentoring role within Kaleo Academy and why you chose them. Be sure to highlight the traits they have that made you want to approach them! Tell them what you expect in the mentoring relationship. How often you want to meet, what you want to do together etc.
- Direct them to the mentoring website page! This page (that you are currently on right now) will tell them all of the expectations, roles, and give more information about the overall program and the part they can play.
- See if they have any questions. If you cannot answer a question, refer them to the website where they can contact Kaleo Academy staff.
- Ask them to pray about it and let you know by a certain date.
2. What do we do together? You can decide this together and it will look different for every mentoring relationship. Kaleo Theology Camp and the Released Project (service learning project) will be two major elements that can shape your time. We will provide follow up information for your mentors to help you process the experience together and to give the mentors a chance to engage with you. Also, as you traverse the online curriculum throughout the year, mentors will have a chance to watch their own videos and discuss topics with you. Don't worry though, not every meeting has to be serious or revolve around Kaleo Academy! You are free to hangout doing whatever the two of you enjoy doing!
3. I'm busy! How do I make time for mentoring? This might take a little work, but we can help you find a routine that works for both you and your mentor. If you are very active, your meeting time might change week-to-week, which is perfectly fine. The easiest advice we can offer is to spend time together doing things you are already going to do. Most of us eat dinner at night, so why not cook a meal together or go out to eat while you talk? If you have a game or want to watch friends play, invite your mentor along and chat on the way or as you watch together. If you attend the same church, maybe you can go early or stay for a little while afterwards to hangout. Don't get discouraged when considering adding another thing to your schedule. It can be easier than you might think!
- Modeling your Christian journey
- Living life together
2. What do we do or talk about during mentoring? You can decide this together and once again, it will look different for every mentoring relationship. Kaleo Academy Theology Camp and the Released Project (service learning project) will be two major elements that can shape your time. We will provide follow up information for you to process the experience together and give the Mentors a chance to engage with the students. Also, as the students traverse the online curriculum throughout the program, Mentors will have a chance to watch videos and discuss topics with them. Have no fear, your mission is not to save the planet in three hours a month.
3. Does it always have to be serious or deep? No! Even considering the above ideas, please make sure to have fun! No relationship is always serious or philosophical. Some days you may need a break from life to just goof off, go on an adventure, or veg out together. Also, it is probably safe to say that even Jesus and the disciples shared some laughs along their journey. After all, God gave us a sense of humor to use.
4. Where do we meet? Wherever you are most comfortable, and it can vary as you wish. If the weather is nice, go on a walk or head to a local park. Coffee shops or restaurants are always good for talking over a treat or meal. Environments that allow for easy conversation and face-to-face interaction are best. Change it up to keep your meetings interesting and enjoyable!
5. What if I’m afraid I will be a bad Mentor? First off, take a deep breath because this is a natural fear. Many people have concerns that they won’t make much of a difference or even that they could cause harm. Since these students chose you, you can already rest assured that they WANT to spend time with you. Also, these kids are cream of the crop. They pursued a theological academy to deepen their own faith journey. You can relax and enjoy that journey with them. As long as you are consistent, supportive, and a good role model, the rest will work itself out.
6. Do I have to attend Theology Camp? It is highly encouraged that you attend Theology Camp. Theology Camp will be from June 25th through July 1st of 2017 on Barclay College Campus in Haviland, Ks and housing will be provided. Other than transportation, all other expenses are covered for your participation in Theology Camp. This will give you an opportunity to bond with your student, learn much more about Kaleo Academy, attend classes with your student, attend face-to-face mentor training, and meet Kaleo Academy staff! We understand that this may not be possible for you with work and/or a family though, therefore videos will be available online after camp to learn on your own.
7. Am I in charge of my student’s Released Project? Only if you desire to be! Each student will have a local project supervisor, which often will not be the Mentor. We do not desire to create any awkwardness or tension between you and your student. You CAN discuss plans with them, help carry the project to completion (without doing it for them), and offer encouragement, ideas and constructive criticism along the way.
8. What happens if life changes impact my mentoring commitment during the year? Life can be unpredictable, and we cannot always be certain of what the future holds. Obviously, if things arise that are out of your control but impact your ability to continue as a Mentor, we will work to figure something out. That being said, we will encourage you to stay as consistent as possible barring any drastic changes such as moving away or traumatic events.
As we mentioned in the FAQs, we strongly encourage you to attend Theology Camp with your student. Other than your transportation, all of the other Theology Camp expenses are covered! We will provide housing and can even try to accommodate your family (with enough warning) so they can join you for the week.
- Students will serve in a way that fits their ministry interests and passion, and may fill a gap in their home church.
- This is an opportunity to practice ministry work in a way that serves the church and community and explores the student's gifts.
- The church wishes to RELEASE the student's calling and their gifts into practical service.
Questions? Feel free to contact Kaleo staff or Mentor Coordinator Christ Follette.