The DSABC One-on-One Mentoring Program is a school based program that matches a supportive and caring adult who assists students to succeed in school by developing a one-on-one relationship. Mentors serve as a positive adult role model providing moral support and encouragement. The objective of the mentor program is to improve academic performance, attendance, behavior, attitude toward school, and most importantly, self-esteem and motivation. The long-term goal is dropout prevention.
The One-on-One Mentoring Program uses adult volunteers to commit to supporting, guiding, and being a friend to a young person for a period of at least one school year. By becoming part of the school network of adults and community members who care about the youth, the mentor can help students develop and reach positive academic, career, and personal goals. Mentors and students engage in a variety of activities including, but not limited to, playing games, working on academic assignments, setting goals or simply talking, listening and sharing experiences. The mentor works with school staff to provide extra support, encouragement and attention to help the student achieve his or her potential.
Engage in a one-on-one relationship with a student, offering support and guidance
Act as a friend, confidant and positive adult role model
Meet with their mentee weekly for one hour at school
Spend time playing games, reading, talking, listening and helping with academics
How do I Become a Mentor?
DSABC requires that new mentors complete an online application along with forms to authorize a criminal background check and DCF search and attend a one-hour training session. Mentors are assigned to a school based on their preference for grade level, proximity to work/home and need.
The WorkPlace Learning e-Mentoring Program matches an industry mentor with students enrolled in the Early College Opportunity Program (Danbury ECO) at Danbury High School. Danbury ECO is designed to provide participating students with opportunities to prepare for postsecondary education and career readiness. Students enrolled in the program can earn college credits, and students who graduate from Danbury ECO will not only earn a high school diploma but an associate degree from Naugatuck Valley Community College.
Mentors provide guidance and advice on developing workplace skills and collaborate on assigned activities via an online platform, IBM’s MentorPlace, and several face to face group meetings throughout the school year. The long-term goal is for students to obtain internships and enter the workforce with the necessary skills for success.
What do e-Mentors Do?
Engage with one to four students enrolled in the Danbury ECO program
Complete online activities with students and provide constructive feedback on their responses
Support the refinement of workplace skills such as communication, critical thinking, problem solving, innovation, and creativity
How do I Become an e-Mentor?
DSABC requires that new e-mentors complete an online application along with forms to authorize a criminal background check and DCF search and view a training webinar.
DSABC presents a scholarship to students participating in the One-on-One Mentor Program upon high school graduation. The scholarship can be applied to any post-secondary educational pursuit and is renewable for up to three years. Since its inception in 1997, DSABC has presented 217 students with $374,000 in scholarship. Students have used the DSABC scholarships at a variety of schools including:
Central Connecticut State University
Harris School of Business
Naugatuck Valley Community College
New Hampton School
Norwalk Community College
Paul Mitchell School
Premier Education Group
Sacred Heart University
University of Connecticut
University of New Hampshire
Westchester Community College
Western Connecticut State University
The Internship Program identifies opportunities for students enrolled in the Early College Opportunity Program (Danbury ECO) to incorporate general business skills or a specialization in technology as an intern. Students gain valuable workplace skills while businesses and community organizations equip them with the necessary tools for success in the workplace and beyond.
While the students will be gaining valuable experience, businesses and community organizations will benefit as well. They will be engaging with students in the community and have the opportunity to develop their future workforce.
Students have successfully completed internships at a number of companies and agencies including:
Dream House Realty, LLC
Oak Branch Advisors
United Way of Western CT
Alexis Koukos, Executive Director
Danbury Student and Business Connection (DSABC) c/o DPS
Danbury Student and Business Connection (DSABC) is a 501c3 non-profit organization, founded in 1990, that fosters collaboration among Danbury Public Schools, local businesses and the community to promote lifelong learning and the successful transition of youth into society and the workforce. The mission of DSABC is to build the character and confidence of Danbury Students to achieve personal and academic success through business and community partnership.
DSABC’s primary programs are the school-based mentoring programs, providing approximately 200 mentors to students in the Danbury Public Schools as well as Henry Abbott Regional Technical School. Mentors are primarily comprised of volunteers from area corporations/businesses and the community at large.