Preparing for Post-Grad Mentoring

Post-Graduation Mentoring

Mentoring coordinators will need to prepare matches for their post-graduation time together, including discussing whatever changes that brings to how and when they meet each month. As the YouthBuild graduation approaches, check in with each mentoring pair and make sure that they are committed to the match moving forward. Emphasize that the commitment to a 15-month match extends beyond the student’s time in YouthBuild. Provide any training, support, or guidance that the match needs to transition into this new phase in their mentoring relationship.

If the match decides to continue post-graduation, they should continue to meet in person for four (4) hours per month until they hit the 15-month mark, at which time they are encouraged to renew their match. Mentors are encouraged to have weekly contact with mentees post-graduation, as this is a time where they can fall into old bad habits, lose focus on their YouthBuild Life Plan, or encounter challenges that require the support of a mentor.

For all post-graduation matches, the mentoring coordinator will check in every month with mentors and mentees, following a similar check-in protocol to the one used during the program year. Be sure that you have updated mentor and mentee contact information prior to graduation, reiterate mentor and mentee responsibilities and program rules.

Mentoring coordinators are also expected to provide any ongoing training or support to these matches, as needed. Remember, your YouthBuild program is still responsible for the quality, consistency, and safety of post-graduation mentoring.

Moving Toward Graduation

There are several tasks to address as graduation approaches:

  • Updating students’ Life Plans. Work with YouthBuild mentees, counselors, teachers, and work-site supervisors to ensure that each student has a newly revised YouthBuild Life Plan that will clarify post-graduation goals and activities.
  • Conducting celebration and new commitment ceremonies. Although the vast majority of your matches will continue past graduation, some may end at this time. It is important that the closure process be a positive one. Matches that end poorly may negate the benefits (PDF) of the entire mentoring experience. See this simple Match Transition and Celebration Ritual (DOC) that you can adapt as needed.
  • Administering end-of-year surveys and other data-collection tools. See the section on Data Collection and Reporting for guidance on the specific survey instruments that must be administered before student or mentors leave the program.