Dream Team offers new alternative to mentoring

Conway, AR —The University of Central Arkansas’ e-Mentoring program, D.R.E.A.M. Team, presented to a standing room crowd of school administrators and elementary, middle, and secondary educators at the Arkansas Association of Alternative Educators (AAAE) Conference in Rogers.

conference group photoThe Diversity, Responsibility, Engagement, Academics, Mentorship (D.R.E.A.M.) Team is an Outreach-based program, sponsored by the Division of Outreach and Community Engagement, designed for UCA students to encourage middle school to high school aged students realize their potential and identify their personal strengths in order to set positive goals for their lives.

D.R.E.A.M. Team advisors, Shaneil Ealy, Kandace Keeney, and Kim McKee, presented “Click Here to Change the World: Using Technology to Build e-Mentoring Relationships.” The D.R.E.A.M. Team’s President, Johnathan Mablin also presented with the group on the advantages of e-mentoring.

Ealy stated, “We are excited to be able to share this innovative mentoring program with educators around the state. Our UCA students have such a heart for service and this program allows them to be a part of something bigger than themselves.”

Kristy Carter, executive director of the Outreach and Community Engagement, said, “The idea of mentoring online is a fresh, unique approach to meeting the needs of at-risk students in rural parts of the state. It is also a great way to mobilize our UCA students to serve beyond the walls of the university while offering school districts an alternative learning option for their students.”

Arkansas Association of Alternative Educators is an organization comprised of all persons supportive and dedicated to alternative learning environments. The vision of AAAE is to provide a statewide network, a unified voice and training/support for all Alternative Learning Environments and the staff that operate them throughout Arkansas.

Ealy said that conference attendees were intrigued with the program and interested in getting their school districts involved.