“It is extremely empowering to impact a student’s life by mentoring at Computers4Kids…the most rewarding experience was witnessing my first mentee watch the final version of his movie project. He had a smile on his face large enough to have saved the world from sadness for a just a moment. He was so proud! ” – Vince Dish, C4K Mentor
Why mentor at C4K?
C4K Mentors are trusted friends who help youth learn valuable skills for life success. Mentors also set a positive example and become a guide to a young person with whom they meet regularly over the course of a year. Successful mentors are open and willing to follow youth interests and to learn new skills alongside a young person. Mentors gain experience working with youth, learn tech and collaboration skills, and expand their social networks.
What do C4K mentors do?
After attending a Mentor Orientation session, mentors will be matched with one of our youth members. Members are local, low-income middle or high school youth. Mentors make a commitment to meet with their mentees once a week to work on science, technology, engineering, arts, and math projects that the pair chooses together. Mentors may also participate in ongoing training provided by C4K, and social events, like showcases, to share work made at C4K, and to meet other mentors and see their projects.
I’m not a tech expert. Am I qualified?
Of course! You don’t have to be a programmer or Web developer to be a C4K Mentor. If you are comfortable using the Internet and Microsoft applications and can navigate around a Windows or Mac computer, you can be a successful mentor. Your positive attitude, desire to work with youth, and interest in learning new skills alongside your mentee will be your keys to success as a mentor.
How much time will I commit?
Mentors attend an orientation at C4K, then are paired with a young person based on common interests and meet with their mentee for one hour per week for about a year (a total of 36 – 40 hours). UVA student mentors, who don’t stay in Charlottesville during the summer, meet one and a half hours per week, in order to finish in one academic year. After orientation and before being matched, mentors are encourage to visit Clubhouse @C4K about an hour each week to get to know our members and to see the exciting activities going on at C4K.
Where does mentoring take place?
All mentoring takes place at C4K, located at 945 Second Street SE, in the IX building.
Is mentoring effective?
Absolutely! Research has shown that young people benefit from mentoring. As a C4K Mentor, you will bring positive, permanent change to a young person in our community. Mentors can feel good knowing that the life and digital skills their mentees learn will positively impact their future successes in school, higher education, career, and community. As a bonus, mentors have a wonderful opportunity to develop a positive, caring relationship with a young person and to learn new skills themselves.