About Campus Connections

About Campus Connections

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About Campus Connections

Campus Connections is a wellness and resiliency-oriented service-learning course that pairs UCCS students and youth from the community in mentor-mentee relationships. Youth are referred through our El Paso County Community partners and are matched with a UCCS student who provides one-on-one therapeutic mentoring throughout the semester.

Mentors spend four hours once a week with their mentee providing academic support, career planning, and promoting positive social skill development.

Mission
The mission of Campus Connections at UCCS is to provide a wellness and resiliency-oriented service-learning environment. The therapeutic youth mentoring program provides a supportive, hands-on, skills-based experience that benefits youth who have experienced adversity and community partners. The program seeks to develop knowledgeable, skilled, and self-aware students through experiential learning.

Student mentors spend four hours once a week with their mentee in a group setting and one-on-one to provide academic support, career planning, positive social skill development, and to develop goals while providing an environment conducive to goal attainment. Strong bonds between mentors and mentees develop over the course of the program. Advanced graduate students and experienced clinical supervisors provide support and guidance to the mentors during Campus Connections to form a collaborative approach and supportive environment for working with youth.

Campus Connections at UCCS is housed within the Department of Human Services in the College of Education.
Philosophy
Through partnerships between the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS) and stakeholders in the El Paso County Community, Campus Connections provides therapeutic mentoring to youth in middle school and high school, in a structured multi-level mentoring community. Youth who may not be reaching their full potential due to individual or environmental risk factors are referred to Campus Connections and matched with a UCCS student mentor. UCCS graduate and undergraduate students provide one-on-one mentorship to youth.

The Campus Connections program provides exposure to university life and allows youth to experience firsthand the possibilities of education and the value of learning. Working collaboratively, university faculty, staff and masters-level students coordinate and supervise while providing comprehensive group learning and instruction to compliment the mentorship experience and needs of the youth.

Campus Connections creates an environment in which each mentorship pairing is nested within a small mentoring group, known as a Mentor Family. The Mentor Family is typically comprised of youth in similar developmental and chronological ages. This unique feature of Campus Connections allows youth to positively interact with their peers while benefiting from their primary mentor and a community of caring peers within their Mentor Family.