On February 23, 2018 at LA Pierce College 63 educators, including peer mentors, from 13 different community colleges, learned and discussed ways to support students in their transition into college. The day began with a presentation by Michelle Ware, from MDRC who has done work on behavioral messaging/behavioral economics for student communication. She introduced the SIMPLER model for messaging (see MDRC power point).
Next, Joanna Zimring- Towne, LA College Promise Faculty Coordinator presented on the Peer Mentor training that is part of the LA College Promise model. There are designated promise peer mentors on each of their 9 district campuses. The curriculum for the training includes Growth Mindset, Appreciative mentoring, and culturally responsive teaching and learning. She proved participants with an example of a communication plan to strategically use to design the topic and time for communication to students (see LACP power point).
East Los Angeles College’s Adelante/First Year Experience Program was another model highlighted. Sandy Chavez, coordinator of the Adelante Peer Mentor model described their training process that included Tara Yosso’s Community Cultural Wealth theory that views students as bringing assets/strengths into the college (see ELAC power point).
Next, our panelists were student mentors from Pasadena City College, LA Community College District, and Rio Hondo College. The peer mentors discussed the ways they communicate with students and the more pressing issues new students have when they transition from high school to college. Many of the peer mentors stated that students are often confused about where to go and are unaware of the student services resources on campus that they qualify for.
Lastly, Crystal Kiekel, Director of the Center for Academic Success at LA Pierce College presented on “creating our inner coach” using Brett Ledbetter’s Ted X presentation and demonstrated the training that she does with her peer mentors and tutors. Faculty and peer mentors discussed how they can be better advocates for their students and how to support those around them.
Shared Reading: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2011/10/03/personal-best
Building Your Inner Coach Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7a5TIzOmeQ&t=2s
East LA College Presentation on Adelante/FYE Model:
LARN Summit Presentation:
Communication Plan Template
Michelle Ware’s MDRC Presentation:
LA Community College District’s Peer Mentor Training for College LA Promise: