By: RJ Franceschini, Follow South Jersey Intern
VINELAND, N.J. — The Big Brother Big Sister of Cumberland and Salem Counties has hired Sharon Krementz as the new Program Manager of Mentor2.0. Krementz has been a social studies teacher at Woodstown Middle School in Woodstown, N.J. for 19 years and hopes to use her experience teaching to work with students in this program.
Mentor2.0 is a program that started at Cumberland County Technical Education Center during the 2021-2022 school year. The program provides one-on-one mentorship for students entering their junior year of high school, to their freshman year of college. Mentor and mentee matches communicate weekly via a web-based platform called iMentor and monthly group in-person events.
The program had difficulty in the beginning due to most schools still using online learning during its creation according to the Director of Programs at BBBS, Tygh Powell. Mentor2.0 is a technology-enriched mentoring program for high school students. It provides support and guidance, helping high school students graduate and succeed in both college and the workforce.
“Helping young adults has always been my passion,” Krementz said in a press release. “At one time, I was a Big Sister and it was a rewarding experience. I believe education and mentorship are major ways to assist youth in creating successful futures. I look forward to lending my knowledge, and enjoyment of life to the whole Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cumberland Salem Counties community.”
The program currently has 94 participants in total, 47 students and 47 mentors. Next school year the organization hopes to bring in 50 new high school juniors. This program is also the only Mentor2.0 in the state of New Jersey.
“High school guidance counselors do help with post graduation and college planning,” said Powell. “But one guidance counselor may be responsible for almost 200 students.”
The basic mentor requirements for the program include:
● Mentors must be at least 21 years of age and hold an associate degree or higher.
● Maintain a reliable internet connection.
● Commit to sending a minimum of one weekly message on a topic that Mentor2.0 provides through the platform.
● Commit to meeting your mentee once every four weeks for two hours at a Mentor2.0 facilitated events during the school year.
Virtual info sessions for those who qualify and are interested in being mentors will be on June 22, at 12 p.m. and 5 p.m. Register at https://bbbs.tfaforms.net/f/virtualinfosession.
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