Story by Jen Krafchick
Formerly known as Campus Corps, the Colorado State University-based mentoring program Campus Connections recently changed its name to better represent its aim as an organization. Where the name Campus Corps could sound like an authoritarian correctional program, the name Campus Connections portrays the relational emphasis on which the mentoring program focuses.
Campus Connections is committed to providing a positive, safe and comfortable place to develop meaningful mentor relationships, encouraging pro-social behavior, while discouraging delinquent behavior. The more descriptive name came just in time, as the program is being implemented on other campuses, including the University of Northern Colorado (launched fall 2015) and at the University of Auckland in New Zealand (in development).
The mentoring program is operated out of CSU’s Department of Human Development and Family Studies in the College of Health and Human Sciences and connects the CSU community to youth in Northern Colorado. “We took the opportunity to explore the impact of the name, and decided to make a change that differentiated us and also clarified the impact of the program. Campus Connections builds powerful connections between campus and community, student mentors and youth mentees, and mentees and the university,” said Department Head Lise Youngblade.
Campus Connections recently received a grant from the William T. Grant Foundation that is allowing Campus Connections faculty to study best practices of mentoring. Campus Connections already yields significantly positive results for CSU students and youth mentees. The faculty hope that this research, combined with the new name, will allow the program to reach even more youth and families in the community.
For more information on Campus Connections, visit their website.
Campus Connections is a multidisciplinary service-learning course at CSU where undergraduate students serve as mentors to youth. Students from over 90 different majors work one-on-one with youth ranging in age from 11 to 18 who are referred to Campus Connections from our community partners within the juvenile justice system of Larimer County, local schools, community agencies and directly from families.
Questions? Contact Jen Krafchick, Jen.Krafchick@colostate.edu, or (970) 491-2171.