Every year we are amazed by the commitment of our Mentors and Mentees. The closing ceremony is an opportunity for each of the 27 Mentoring pairs to share what this experience has meant to them. Jamila Sams, our Program Director, offered her insights on the progress of the year, highlights from group activities and introduced plans for future development.“This year has been an incredible year. I would like to thank all the students for staying dedicated to the program, the Mentors for going above and beyond and the parents for supporting us. We are honored and proud to have six amazing students graduating from our program this year and continuing to college. We know that they will continue to treasure the valuable relationships they have formed with their Mentors.”
Dr. Lonise Bias, mother of late U. of Maryland and NBA star Len Bias, motivated our graduates with her story and words of encouragement as the students head off to the next step of their educational journey. Four students from our program will be graduating and heading into college and Dr. Bias was there to inspire them to stay committed to their personal success and “not become bored with their greatness.”
We heard some very moving testimonies from our mentors about what there mentee relationship means to them. Etta, Mentor to a young lady named Diamond, held back tears as she told the group how strong their relationship had grown due to stressful and busy times at work and school. Their words of advice are borrowed from Mother Terese: “never be too busy as not to think of others.” Etta and Diamond said that no matter what was going on in their lived they could just text or call each other for support. Etta is amazed and proud of the young lady that Diamond has become and sometimes wonders who is mentoring who.
Taekwon Davidson, one of our scholars, will be graduating this year and is heading to university on a scholarship! He shared a poem and a song about his time with his mentor and what keeps him motivated. His message was to keep trying. “Share the love and knowledge you have with others so we may all move move forward in a positive way.” The group erupted in applause and the adults in the room sat, smiling, holding back tears because we had just witnessed a young student become a leader.