SEEDS

The Center for Life Beyond Reed, Division of Student Services

History

Tubman Founders

At the beginning of spring semester 2001 the volunteer office coordinator at Harriet Tubman Middle School informed several Reed interns of the school's dire need for one-on-one mentors. A list had been compiled of over 90 Tubman students who were placed, or had requested to be placed, on a mentor waiting list due to their academic, social, or disciplinary problems. The Reed-Tubman partnership responded immediately to this need in two ways. First, the partnership's yearlong interns volunteered to each mentor a student once a week in addition to their already pledged commitment to work as teachers' aides and team-teach after-school classes.

Second, the partnership advertised at Reed College for new volunteers to mentor a minimum of one student for one hour, once a week. After a short application and interview process, six committed Reed students were hired to volunteer at Harriet Tubman as part of the partnership's new satellite mentor program. The mentors were given a tour of Harriet Tubman led by the Vice principal, Carla Sosanya, on February 20-21, 2001, and began mentoring the following Monday. The program continued and has shown great success. Each mentor was responsible for structuring each hour-long session with the Harriet Tubman students. Focus ranges from academic help and tutoring to simply providing a stable and consistent older figure in the students' lives. The mentors wrote a short weekly summary of their individual sessions to ensure a level of professionalism throughout their relationship with the Tubman students as well as maintaining a feeling of cohesiveness within the larger Reed-Tubman partnership. In 2007, we moved the parternship to Lane Middle School and have continued the program in a similar format.

General Information

Lane is located at SE 60th and Ogden, just under 2.5 miles away; students can bike or take the 19 to 60th and Duke and walk south to the school.

LASER overview