tnAchieves has begun its effort to recruit 9,000 volunteer mentors to meet the goal of providing a local support system to every TN Promise applicant in the Class of 2022.

Although TN Promise is a financial aid program, a critical component and often the difference maker for many students is the volunteer mentor. Mentors work with a small group of three to seven students as they transition from high school to college. Mentors send reminders of important deadlines, serve as a trusted college resource and, most importantly, encourage students to reach their full potential. All mentors complete a one-hour online training and receive weekly updates on the program and its requirements.

“You cannot replace the committed, encouraging support offered by a local mentor,” says tnAchieves Executive Director Krissy DeAlejandro. “Through the challenges of the past year, we have been grateful to our volunteers across the state who answered the call to ensure students successfully transition to college and feel seen. While TN Promise funding is important, mentors represent the heart of our program.”

Current tnAchieves mentors indicate that they only spend about one hour per month in their volunteer role. tnAchieves mentors also have access to tnAchieves CONNECT, a virtual mentoring platform that allows for efficient and safe online connections for serving students.

“For the last 13 years, tnAchieves has provided high-impact mentor support for students,” says tnAchieves Director of Mentors Tyler Ford. “Virtual mentoring has made it possible to continue supporting students locally while doing so safely. If you have one hour a month and believe in the transformative power of education, you can serve as an outstanding mentor for students in your community.”

Mentors can serve students in their community from home, offering support via text, email, calls and video chat on their schedule. Those interested in learning more or applying can visit www.tnAchieves.org/mentors.