Peer Mentor Program

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SIU students working together

The goal of the Peer Mentoring program at the First Saluki Center is to increase student retention and success for mentees by engaging them early in their academic journey to identify challenges and connect them to the appropriate resources that will facilitate their success.

The First Saluki Peer Mentors are continuing students, upperclassman first-generation juniors, seniors and graduate students, who leverage their own skills and expertise to help other first-generation students have a successful education. The First Saluki Center mentors will have weekly and bi-weekly one-on-one meetings with their mentees to help identify challenges, set goals, and build skills. Specifically, Peer Mentors provide support, guidance and encouragement with the following outcomes in mind:

  • Increase mentees knowledge about resources, which may help them succeed in college.
  • Promote development of educational, leadership, career and learning goals.
  • Increase social engagement and sense of belonging for students.
  • Increase academic engagement and success.

To receive textbooks/need-based financial assistance, self-identified first-generation students must meet the program requirements.

Program Requirements:

  • Participate in the FSC Peer Mentoring Program for (2) semesters (fall and spring).
  • Attend FSC peer mentoring program meetings either weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly.
  • If you consistently do not show or cancel scheduled mentoring meetings, you will be withdrawn from the program.
  • Attend workshops.
  • Maintain a SIUC cumulative 2.0 grade point average.
  • Be a self-identified undergraduate first-generation student.
  • Be in good standing with student rights & responsibilities.
  • After one semester of active participation in the peer mentoring program, students are eligible for need based financial assistance.
  • Have a current FAFSA on file.

Benefits of Peer Mentoring

Mentoring is a high-impact practice that encompasses a personal development relationship, in which a more experienced or more knowledgeable person facilitates the professional development of someone who is less experienced in a particular area.

Benefits to Mentors

  • To share one’s knowledge and experiences
  • To help shape educational, leadership, career and learning goals
  • To develop a new generation of successful mentors
  • To experience a feeling of pride in seeing the mentee learn and focus on goals
  • A meaningful resume entry
  • To appreciate the ability to lead the mentee to higher levels of thinking

Benefits to Mentees

  • To learn more about the University and the community
  • To build self-esteem
  • To enhance self-motivation, self-discipline and goal-setting
  • To experience an atmosphere of professionalism, trust and respect
  • To be more successful in one’s academic career
  • To receive guidance in academic decision making
  • To be motivated by academic success

Benefits to SIU Carbondale

  • To increase student retention
  • To improve campus climate