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Journey Together will help high school seniors transition into their first year of college

Posted at 6:44 PM, May 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-10 19:44:40-04

BRYAN, Texas — Journey Together is an initiative through I Heart Bryan to help high school seniors transition to college.

This mentee to mentorship program will partner with the Hispanic Forum scholarship recipients.

“Right now, we’re partnering with the Hispanic Forum,” said Andrea Alvarado, Co-Director of Journey Together, I Heart Bryan. “We’re being provided with the recipients of scholarships from them. Eventually, we do want to branch out and provide a mentor for all scholarship recipients in the local area from different programs but since this is new, we were like let’s partner with them.”

Andrea says this is how they plan to get their mentees part of the journey together.

Her coworker Daniel Weiss is serving as a mentor.

“The reason why I want to become a mentor is to help tackle those first-year problems and just abundant incoming information that you get,” said Daniel Weiss, Mentor for Journey Together, I Heart Bryan.

Andrea attended the Hispanic Forum Gala last year, along with the founder and CEO of I Heart Bryan, Fabi Payton, and was inspired to help the community.

“We thought that it would be great to also give them the opportunity to give them help and guidance in other ways too so being able to give them guidance throughout the application process, financial aid, even balancing social and school life,” said Alvarado. “A lot of the times, students don’t know how to balance that.”

Although mentees will be recruited from the Hispanic Forum, this is open to all high school seniors to apply.

“Initially, when they first started many years ago, it was specifically for Hispanic students from the Hispanic community, but they’ve branched out and welcome all applicants from the Bryan-College Station and surrounding areas,” said Alvarado.

Journey Together is looking for mentors with a servant's heart.

“A lot of them are first-gen students as well so they understand the struggles,” said Alvarado. “They’ve been through the struggles. I think the reward is being able to help somebody through what we didn’t have through. I think that’s going to be reward in itself.”

Daniel Weiss is a middle school teacher and says becoming a mentor was the perfect opportunity for him.

SOT 4: Daniel Weiss, Mentor for Journey Together, I Heart Bryan

“I currently work with seventh graders, eighth graders but I think focusing on that transition from high school to college, to me it was just more attractive,” said Daniel Weiss, Mentor for Journey Together, I Heart Bryan. “It just sounds like a good opportunity to keep helping kids out.”

The goal is for mentors to stay and support an incoming freshman for at least one year.

“If there is a mutual agreement, then they can be there to support them until they graduate and be able to cheer them on as they walk the stage,” said Alvarado.

Daniel is looking forward to making an impact on his future mentee.

“I look forward to meeting my mentee and I can’t wait to give them the strategies and help them with the organization skills and the confidence skills that I hopefully want them to instill in a mentee so that they can be successful at the college level,” said Weiss.

Andrea says the bigger the diversity, the better. If you are interested in applying to be a mentor, visit their website here: Journey Together | I Heart Bryan (iheartbryanevents.com).