This week we celebrated mentors with our annual LSS Mentor Appreciation Breakfast. It was an amazing event and as always, reinforced the importance of mentoring. We owe thanks to the sponsors of the event – First PREMIER Bank/PREMIER Bankcard, Citibank, Sanford Health and Wells Fargo.
Mentors were welcomed with tables full of artwork and thank you cards made by students in the program. The notes were both heartwarming and funny. We will share more in a later post, but here is what just a few of them said:
Thank you for being my mentor. You are an awesome person to be with and talk to. I’m glad they picked you to be with me.
You have been the best mentor ever and it has been really fun spending time with you. You da boom!!!!
My mentor is a pretty cool guy and school would not be the same without him.
This year, the keynote was a panel that included Randy Bury, a longtime mentor; Moises Perez Quentanilla, a senior at Lincoln High School who has met with Randy for the past 11 years and Kerri Cox, the school counselor at Robert Frost Elementary. They shared great perspective and insight on mentoring and what it means to them. Kerri shared the many amazing moments she has been part of through mentoring. One of the most meaningful ones she shared was that a mentor went on to adopt his student. She also said how creative mentors are when they visit each week and that some people just love the break and the opportunity to just sit a color or play a board game in the middle of the day. Randy talked about how much Moises has grown. They recently went car shopping and Randy helped Moises pick out a new car. Moises shared that Randy is a terrible bowler and that he knows his life would be different if Randy was not part of it.
The event concluded with the presentation of the Outstanding Mentor, Outstanding Rookie and Community Partner Awards. Congratulations to Curt Lauret, Trey Townsend and Hegg Realtors for their accomplishments!
Trey came to mentor at Edison through an Augustana University education class in Spring 2016. Most of college students who are required to mentor only stay for the semester, but Trey wanted to stay with Gio and continue mentoring on his own. When Trey and Gio get together the room literally feels brighter and lighter. There is definitely a connection there that really works.
Curt has been a mentor for over 10 years. He has been mentoring the same student since he was a second grader and will continue to meet with him next year as he goes to middle school. Curt has been dependable, meeting his student where he is at and looking at what his needs are every week.
Just one year ago, Susan B. Anthony Elementary and Hegg formed a school/business partnership. The school relies on Hegg for help with unmet needs for their students, families as well as the school as a whole. When forming this partnership, the school stressed the need for more mentors for their students. At the end of last school year, there were about 20 mentors for Susan B. students. Right now, there are 40 thanks to the partnership with Hegg. There are currently 23 Hegg employees who mentor every week. Congratulations, Hegg and thank you for making mentoring a priority for your employees.
A big thanks to the Sioux Falls School District Community Relations team for creating the videos! It was a wonderful surprise to mentors at the breakfast and a great treat to hear from students who really enjoy their mentor.
As we wrap up the 2016-17 school year, LSS would like to sincerely thank all mentors who gave their time and energy each week!
Post By Michelle Madsen