College students mentoring middle school students, with on goal in mind to help young Detroit students, understand how they can shape their future. If you attend a mentoring session and ask for each person to describe the organization in one word, you would get a variety of answers. Various words such as: “Growth”, “Needed”, and lastly “Family”, which everyone from mentees to mentors described.
The organization “My Brothers and Sisters Keeper,” is an organization that partner with Paul Robeson Malcolm X Academy in Detroit. They bus middle school students to campus every other Saturday. The organization try to get the younger students acclimated to college, and show them peers looking like them who are succeeding. Teaching them about their future and brushing up on their literacy skills. For Mentee like Lauren Trembul, who said Being in this program taught, her that going to college is a great experience.
Unfortunately financial issues have made it difficult for the organization. Funding has been scarce since the Residential College of Arts and Humanities stopped sponsoring, since becoming a registered student organization. Finances have made it difficult to continue the program. A single mentoring session can be pricey. Supplies run sixty-dollars, and lunch in the MSU dinning halls can add up to nearly five-hundred dollars.
“Black Student Alliance, BSA they gave us a lot money. That really helped. We decided to order pizza instead, it’s sufficiently cheaper, and splitting with some drinks instead of going into the cafeteria,” said President Camille Thomas who have been figuring ways to continue the program.
Mentors like John Kochiss says the hard work is worth it. “It’s when they come back and tell you I remember that time, when you told me this, and how it affected me and made me feel. The fact that it’s not that they remember, but it was some kind of lesson,” says the MSU senior. The mentors hard work and passion does not go unnoticed. “They help me with a lot with things I need to know, and my insecurities I have, because I have a lot of those,” says Mentee Lauren Trembul.
The program is now wrapped up for the school year, and will begin again next fall.