Improving care. Changing lives.

Manville School

The Mentoring Program

Beginning in 1995, JBCC developed and implemented a mentoring program, similar to the big brother/big sister volunteer program, pairing Harvard Medical and Harvard School of Education students with students at JBCC’s Manville School.  Many Manville students have limited exposure to healthy role-models and many come from single-parent households.  This program increases their connections and relationships with a unique and exceptional population; future physicians , teachers, and clinicians from Harvard.

The graduate students commit to meeting with their assigned students one afternoon a week for one school year and participate in a year-long elective course. The mentors/mentees enjoy activities such as; arts and crafts, music, visiting museums, sports, games, and cooking.  Mentors are supervised by Manville’s Family Programming Coordinator.  The course is a bimonthly seminar which focuses on month-long modules on topics of particular relevance to the lives of Manville children.   

Parents Reported:   

  • “Children asked to see their mentors at other times.”
  • “They (children) talked about their times with their mentors.”
  • “They always wanted to go to school the day they saw their mentor.”
  • “My son only has females in his life, now he has a male role model.”
  • “I saw increased confidence in my son, definitely less depressed, thanks to his mentor.”    

Medical Students Have Reported What They Have Learned:

  • "Power of healthy relationships.”
  • "Understanding someone of a completely different background.”
  • “Patience required to deal with this ten year old and how I can apply this to future patients.”
  • “About a child who has experienced trauma and how they react and cope.”
  • "This experience is as valuable as my training in my patient/doctor courses.”

All mentors evaluate the program at the end of the school year. 98% of the students would like to continue for the second year, however, that does depend on their school obligations.  Many of the mentors stay in touch with their mentees after graduation.
For more information on the Harvard-Manville Mentoring Program, please contact Brina Einstein.