Tag Archives: Thank your Mentor Day

Thank your Mentor Day!

Today, January 26, 2012, is National Thank your Mentor Day! It seemed like a great time to turn to the students in the icouldbe.org program and find out what they have to say to their mentors.

Below is a selection of letters from mentees to their mentor in honor of Mentoring Month and Thank your Mentor Day. Their responses are truly touching and remind us that they are the reason we celebrate this month.

How are you thanking your mentor today?

A wordcloud of the letters from icouldbe.org mentees.

Dear leftyonly:

Thanks for everything you have taught until now.  You have given great evidence to me that I greatly accept.  With your help, I know that I can reach my job interest.  With you, I will be able to excel like you did.  I can’t show enough gratitude that I have because of your information.  I know that because of you I am prepared.

Your mentee, Junior 704


Dear Team2win and Ms. Maria:

I thank you for mentoring me, and teaching me new things that I needed to know.  You taught me the ways I need to go to achieve my goals. Thank you for taking your time to mentor me. It is because of you that I know what jobs I want to do when I get older.  Having a mentor is good for me because they show me the way to go.



Dear Mentor:

Thank you for being my mentor.  I would like you to write to me.  If we talked, I would answer all your emails and I will ask you a few questions.  Any advice you will give me I will try to achieve it. I would like to be an artist or dancer.  I could see by looking at your profile that you could give me good advice.



Dear volunteer9:

I would like to thank you for your assistance.  I thank you for commenting on my work and telling me how I could do better.  Please help me get into Princeton, Harvard or Yale, similar to what you did for college.  Could you please email me things that could be further help to me?  Thank you for your time.

Marino 704



I really appreciate having a fantastic mentor like you! A student, especially during their junior and senior year, cherishes having someone to guide them throughout school. Your advice and advocacy has undeniably helped make decisions towards my future. One of the great aspects of having you as a mentor is that I have also became a more ecstatic and optimistic person. I am undeniably looking forward to having you as a mentor during my senior year as well.

With much gratitude,



Dear Mentor,

Thank you so much! You have been a GREAT person to me and of much help!

Recently you told me that I should research things about documentaries in history and I think that a great idea. I’m wondering, how did you find out about this website? But yeah, this has been a great experience so far. I find it really gnarly that some people care about students and help them achieve what they want in life. I think it is also cool that you take time off your day and do this! So I hope you and your family and friends are doing great, and have a good day – and week – and month!

Sincerely, basedgod.


Dear Mentor,

The purpose of this email is to thank you for being my mentor. I want to let you know that I really appreciate what you do for me because not many people take time to do what you do. I’m glad to have a mentor like you, because with your help more doors to opportunities are going to open for me and for that I thank you.

Sincerely, Chris


I really appreciate you taking the time to review my work. It is very helpful and I really enjoy your feedback. Thank you so much for all your help, I believe that the information you provide will help me become a better person. Hope you’re having a good day!


Hey, I just wanted to say thank you so much for taking your own time to be my mentor. I have really learned a lot and you have encouraged me to go into what I really want even more. I have learned a lot about what it takes to go into medicine and I am very grateful for that. I hope you could keep being my mentor and keep giving me great advice. Thanks a lot. 🙂


Thank you for being such a great mentor, I really appreciate all the help and advice you’ve given me, it’s been a lot of help.  I want to say thanks for always reviewing my work so fast! I have a really good grade thanks to the fact that you review my work fast so I can move on. I’m really thankful for you, and I hope we can keep our relationship growing bigger and bigger.

Happy national mentor month!

Sincerely, liz25


Happy National Mentor Month!!

I just wanted to say thank you for all your support and advice. You’ve really helped me think about my future and what I want to do with it. Thank you for helping me understand what I’m doing wrong or what I’m not doing to prepare myself for college. I really appreciate it and don’t know what I would have done without having questions answered, talk to you soon.

— Jess9

Happy Mentoring Month!

What better month than January, a time of fresh starts and new beginnings, to celebrate the power of mentoring? That’s right – it’s National Mentoring Month! Every January, the nation recognizes the importance of mentors and the impact that mentoring can have on today’s youth. It also serves as a call-to-action for new volunteers to join in on the mentoring movement.

All month long, we’ll be setting new goals, sharing stories from mentors and students, and attending events – so follow along with us on our website, here on our blog, and on our Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages.

There are a few special events planned for the month. Here’s a quick list:

January 11 – I am a Mentor Social Media Day

Check out this event on Facebook to find out more about how you can share your mentoring stories and celebrate Mentoring Month.

January 24-25 – National Mentoring Summit, Washington D.C.

We will be attending this event, live tweeting and posting about our experience there. Here is a link with more information on the summit. Later in the month, we’ll update you on how you can join in the conversation.

January 26 – Thank your Mentor Day

This is a great day to recognize and thank a mentor in your life. We’ll be sharing stories from students with icouldbe.org mentors, as well as posting a special thank you from our executive director. Here’s a link with ideas for how to celebrate.

Is there anything in particular you’d like to see us talk about this month?  If so let us know!

A thank you from Kate Schrauth to all our mentors

In honor of January, 25, 2011 – National Thank Your Mentor Day – Kate Schrauth sends the following thank you to all icouldbe.org mentors:

Dear icouldbe.org mentors,

Because of you another child has been mentored.  Because of you, our volunteer mentors across the nation, a child has been given the gift of care and guidance and a promise of a life of hope and meaning.

This National Mentoring Month, and especially during Thank Your Mentor Day, the staff at icouldbe.org want to send our deepest thanks and gratitude to all of our volunteer mentors, without whom our efforts to serve at-risk youth would be impossible.  Ten years ago, we had a crazy dream that we could recruit hundreds of volunteers to help our most vulnerable kids discover their dreams and use their talents to create meaningful and fulfilled lives.  And now, because of you, our dream has become reality.  Some questioned if we could do it, others scoffed at our ideas, but you and all your peer mentors believed that this dream was worth fighting for.

Today, icouldbe.org is a strong and growing organization.  We have served 20,000 students and are working diligently to grow our program to serve 5,000 students annually over the next two years.  Your constant care and support has made all of this possible, so thank you for all you do each week.

We also wanted to reflect on a notable 2010. As always, we are truly grateful for the support of our school partners, funders and extended network of mentors, which represent extraordinary cross-sector efforts on behalf of thousands of young people in this country.

We were proud to launch our partnership with Monster.com and to co-create our new iSucceed campaign. New partnerships with public schools, community colleges, universities, workforce investment boards, state departments of education and economic development councils and corporate employers are underway throughout New York State, California, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Texas.

This spring, icouldbe.org’s research detailing the impact of our online mentoring program on the vulnerable kids we serve was published in the Journal of Vocational Behavior.  Our independent research team from Drexel University developed a multi-year evaluation that monitored the progress of more that 1,500 students in the program and the findings clearly demonstrate the power of online mentoring.  We see statistically significant improvements in self-efficacy for all students, but especially those who are the most vulnerable and self-identify as hopeless.

This means that because of the care, support and guidance of their online mentors, the students have a highly improved ability to cope in their very challenging worlds where poverty, violence, drugs and dropouts are the normal order of the day.  Because of our program and our volunteers, our kids have practiced and developed skills that have moved their decision-making abilities from external sources (needing to be told what to do) to internal sources (making good life decisions for themselves.)

Last month America’s Promise released a new report, Building a Grad Nation: Progress and Challenge in Ending the High School Dropout Epidemic, revealing some remarkable work that has been done to lower the national dropout rate. However, significant challenges remain. Close to two million students still attend the nation’s dropout factories.  icouldbe.org knows that our mentoring program is significantly helping our students complete high school and prepare for post-secondary education and meaningful careers.   But we need to provide our program to more students and that will require more mentors.  Throughout 2011, we will work to engage 1,000 new mentors.

As you know, January is National Mentoring Month and we launched a massive mentor recruitment initiative to bring on 300 new mentors. We’re happy to announce the fulfillment of this goal! A follow up campaign will begin in February to recruit the remaining 700 new mentors throughout the winter and spring.  We’ll need you to help us spread the word using any social media outlets you have and by engaging your networks of friends family and colleagues to register to become mentors.

From all of us at icouldbe.org, we thank you and wish you a very happy and healthy New Year!

Very Sincerely,

Kate Schrauth

Inspired Stories

Last week we told stories of how our mentors have inspired us and thanked them for helping us become who we are today. This week, we’re looking at things from a different angle!

We are so thankful that the mentors in our lives are able to affect and shape us. What about the interactions with those that we mentor? Part of the experience at icouldbe.org is seeing what a difference you can make in the lives of your mentees. And so we ask you –

How have those you mentor made a difference in your life? Please share your stories with us!

[Also – here’s a quick update on our goal to sign up 200 mentors this month – we have reached ­230!]

Today is Thank Your Mentor Day!

Because of the significance of today, those of us here at icouldbe.org would like to individually thank the mentors who have had a great impact and influence on us throughout our lives.

From Michelle Derosier (Director of Programs at icouldbe.org)

I am a true representation of the proverb “it takes a village to raise a child.” I was that child and my village consisted of my family, my church, my teachers, and a sprinkling of strangers throughout the years. These individuals were instrumental in providing a foundation for the development of my values and beliefs.
The most important person in said village was (and probably still is) my grandfather – the man who nurtured and mentored me throughout most of my life. My grandfather is a man who “could have been somebody” in the materialistic sense of the statement. He is perceptive, clever with numbers, and annoyingly adept at learning new languages. However, my grandfather spent most of his adult life working menial jobs and catering to those who are “somebody.” He did so not because he lacked focus or determination, but because he chose to surrender his success for that of his family. Instead of going to school when he arrived in the U.S. from Haiti in the 70s, he spent decades working to afford to bring his children and extended family members to America for a better life. His desire for higher education was never fulfilled, but his labor paid for countless degrees and full access to the American Dream.

As I watch the state of Haiti today I am especially thankful for my grandfather’s sacrifice and overall guidance.

From Kate Schrauth (Executive Director at icouldbe.org)

There have been many people in my life that I consider mentors, but one stands out among the rest.  As a young professional in the nonprofit world, I was fortunate to meet Mel King, an activist, community organizer, teacher and Founder of MIT’s Community Fellows Program.  As I worked to create and grow a new organization I helped to found in Boston, Mel provided not only advice and expertise on community building and organizational development, but even more importantly, shared his philosophies on communities and the power of love and forgiveness to create social change.  Mel King, for me, is a gift who continues to this day to provide me a sense of confidence and hope as I continue to champion the young people with whom I am privileged enough to work.  I often wonder what life may have held for me without Mel’s influence.  I am grateful beyond words for his perspective, advice and most of all, his smile.

From Elizabeth Moran (Director of Strategic Development at icouldbe.org)

Thoughtful, encouraging, inspiring and, most importantly, candid…these are the words that come to mind when I think of my mentor. I remember a situation that was particularly challenging for me…I was disappointed because I did not get an exciting project I wanted. Basically, she talked me off the ledge.  It wasn’t just her reminding me of my strengths and accomplishments, it was also her challenging me to not over-react to the situation.  I have appreciated her encouraging words, as well as her courage to tell me things I didn’t want to hear, all of which have helped me learn and grow.

From Jake Kersey (Program Manager at icouldbe.org)

I’ve been blessed with a multitude of mentors over the years; caring teachers, coaches, and – above all – family members have had a constant and profound impact on shaping me into the person I am today, and rarely have I faced a challenge without the confidence that accompanies such a broad, nurturing network of support. With this in mind, I’d like to recognize a mentor of mine who probably never saw himself as such. Mr. Jon Downing, my good friend Michael’s father, dedicated every ounce of his considerable energy to cultivating a warm, stable home for his 3 children. Raising them mostly on his own, Mr. Downing’s work ethic was impressive enough that even as kids, we used to marvel at how tirelessly he toiled to ensure Michael and his siblings never wanted for anything. By example alone Mr. Downing helped me come to appreciate the sacrifices my own father had made to foster a peaceful and prosperous home environment. Despite an exhaustive work schedule, Jon seldom missed an opportunity to make his home the hub of his children’s community, hosting countless barbeques, reveling amidst milestones and impromptu gatherings alike, always projecting mischievous humor and open-mindedness to any who passed through his door. Such sustained and sincere commitment to one’s family inspired sufficient admiration and respect on its own; however, Jon Downing extended this commitment beyond his family to the community he helped construct around them. In doing so he taught me that mentoring needn’t take place over a sustained period, through any sort of conventional means, or with any defined expectations or outcomes. Rather, at a time when I had been rattled by a series of external crises and perceived personal failures, Mr. Downing reached out to me, reminding me that I had a community, and that he was a caring and concerned part of it. It was a small and momentary gesture; we didn’t go on to talk through any issues or restore equilibrium to my unsteady world. In fact, we never mentioned the interaction again. Still, the power of that simple action, that moment of empathetic outreach, continues to astound and inspire me. The many overt mentors in my life are there to steady and support me through whatever challenges I’m able to conjure up each day. But Mr. Downing taught me that mentoring can take place within a moment, and resonate for a lifetime, and for that I’ll always be thankful.