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Jóvenes Adelante Incoming Class of 2019 Meets its Mentors

By Don Krim

Mentor Rosario Hernandez Morales poignantly and emotionally addressed 28 new Jóvenes Adelante students and new mentors this past Saturday at SmartSpace.  Her feelings to the crowd are summarized below.

“No se puede imaginar como tan diferente y organizado es Jóvenes Adelante en comparación con mis años universitarias. Sin embargo, fuera algo que cambió mi vida. Pues regreso para ser un mentor. Estoy aquí para todos, no solo para mi mentee.”

“You cannot imagine how different and organized Jóvenes Adelante is now, compared to when I was in school. Nevertheless, JA changed my life, and that is why I am here now to give back as a new mentor. And whether you are my mentee or not, I’m here for each of you.”

The meeting, conducted entirely in Spanish by the selected students, featured programming and mentoring teams and oriented students to each other, to the mentor program, to the concept of sponsors who support them, to their responsibilities to  JA, and to JA’s responsibility to them. After the orientation, mentors and students were paired off and went to get acquainted.

One new mentor, who could not contain her enthusiasm of the student she met with, wrote immediately to the organizers of the event “We had a wonderful afternoon! I took her to the papeleria she needed to get to by three. Then we went to have a sandwich at Fabrica Aurora. She had never been there and did not know what sculpture was! Since she is in architecture, we visited several stores there and played a game of choosing your favorite ceramic tile and explaining why. Had a blast.”

This orientation marked the end of the 2019 selection process and the beginning of new careers for 28 new JA students. The final students were selected from 138 applicants after months of screening, review, and two interviews—one individual and one with their families in their homes.

It also marked the start of a new era for JA’s mentor program. Restructured by Mentor Director Nora Weaver and her partner-in-arms, David Manning, this program now has a robust footing to make it self-sustaining. New recruitment, more Mexican mentors, robust new training, an online discussion forum to share experiences and ideas, and the entry of JA’s newest staff team member, Mentor Coordinator José Antonio López Cortés, are exciting ne features of the new mentor program. López Cortes brings 11 years of experience working for the Secretary of Education.

This brings JA’s current, active student membership to 104. Imagine: 104 students, 104 sponsorships, 104 mentorships! That is how large the Jóvenes Adelante family has become.

Jóvenes Adelante unlocks a radically more expansive future for the youth of San Miguel de Allende by easing financial barriers to higher education and by developing life and leadership skills. To be a sponsor, or for more information, please visit website jovenesadelante.org, contact us at 415 150 0030, or email info@jovenesadelante.org

Felipe de Jesús Aceves Delgado and Ariel Ashwell

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