By Ashleigh Hughes

RISE, or Respect, Inspire, Support, and Empower, will be put into action during fall 2016. The program will help new students in their adjustment to KU and will be beneficial for student leaders throughout campus.

Incoming freshman can apply for the program at Connections orientation. Since the program is still in development, the coordinators are not sure of the number of freshman that will sign up for the program, but they are hoping for a decent number of students.

RISE is currently seeking as many mentors as they can get for the upcoming year. The mentor program is open to students of all majors. The program is directed toward first year college students as they adjust to their new life at KU.

Paige Brookins, Coordinator for Student Success at CASA, is one of the organizers for the new mentor program.

Brookins explained the beginnings of the program. “Two years ago, my supervisor had a meeting where one of the ideas that came up was a mentor program. At that time it was staff working with first year students,” said Brookins. “The program was successful, but feedback encouraged the program to move to a peer to peer view point.”

Once all the applications for the program have been processed, mentors and mentees will be matched in July to help communication begin before the school year starts.

“We want to create successful mentor to mentee relationships. We want the mentee to feel like they have connected to the campus and community itself,” Brookins said.

CASA will hold two information sessions to help spread the word throughout the university. They also will schedule meetings with other clubs and organizations to help encourage current and future student leaders to join the program.

According to Brookins, other colleges also begin to create successful mentor programs on their own campuses. She said, “Other colleges such as Texas Tech, Millersville and California University of Pennsylvania have been in discussions with us to help us build our mentor program.”

Megan Risko, a sophomore, applied for the program at one of their informational sessions. “I’m in the Engage program, which has a mentor program in it as well. I find this program to be very similar to that.”

If any students are interested in the program, they can get an application at the CASA office in Rohrbach Library.


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