Intern And Volunteer Opportunities

Many have helped build the Tutor/Mentor Connection in the years since 1993, but I've not been able to effectively show the growth of this network, nor show what people and organizations have helped in the past, or are helping now. This article is a list of people and organizations who helped in the 1990s. This link points to list of interns who helped between 2006 and 2015.

In July 2011 I created the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, using the ideas we've been sharing on this site for over 12 years. Through the Tutor/Mentor Institute I'll continue to fund the web sites that support the Tutor/Mentor Connection and I'll continue to host conferences, one-on-one consultations, and on-line meetings and forums. My goal is to attract revenue from more than philanthropy so that the tools and services we build can have greater impact on the growth of tutor/mentor programs than we have been able to provide in the past due to lack of revenue and leadership support.

This page shows projects that volunteers, interns and grad students have done to communicate our ideas. The list below represents work interns and volunteers could be doing to help the Tutor/Mentor Institute, or to help individual tutor/mentor programs.

This Talent Map is a different way of viewing this list. The jobs below are nodes on the talent map that need to be filled by responsible people.

We will add to it from time to time, and others are encouraged to add their own project ideas. If you are looking for a service learning project, internship, etc. and want to volunteer to work in one of these areas, email ten.knilhtrae|2rotnemrotut#ten.knilhtrae|2rotnemrotut and introduce yourself, or introduce yourself in this forum.

Universities such as Loyola University Chicago, have launched comprehensive strategies, seeking to engage the talent of the university in partnerships that solve community problems. At Loyola University Chicago this is The Center for Experiential Learning. Goals are to build "partnerships and true relationships" that go beyond one-time visits of students to a non-profit, to "deeper and longer term partnerships."

This is what T/MC seeks when it describes the ABC University Tutor/Mentor Connection, shown in essays on the Tutor/Mentor Institute web site.

In order for this type of relationship and partnership to take place in businesses, universities, hospitals and/or faith groups, one or two people within an organization need to begin to investigate the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC and its goals, and the questions we're trying to ask and answer. Then they need to draw in a growing number of others until a full strategy is in place, owned by different sectors of the university community.

A starting point might be for interns, graduate students and/or faculty to get involved through one of the projects listed below.

Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC and Tutor/Mentor Connection opportunities

Planning and Business Development
This wiki is organized into sections, with different projects and opportunities outlined in individual sections. One or two project managers/recruiters are needed to help recruit others who will take ownership of one or more of the different projects. For instance our use of mapping is described here . At this point we need to update all of the technology supporting the program locator and the interactive map, and we need to update the layers of information on the maps (demographics, assets, political districts). While we might do this with volunteers, we can do it better if a company or university were to partner with us to provide on-going and long-term support for this part of the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC.

Because the Tutor/Mentor Connection has been growing since 1993 we have a full range of strategies that each require talent and manpower to update them, lead them and promote them to a growing number of users. Just fixing the maps, for instance, does not improve the quality of the database of Chicago programs, nor does it provide the advertising frequency and reach needed to bring thousands of users, volunteers and donors through the maps and to specific programs. These strategies are now being supported through the Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC, which is not operating as a 501-c-3 charity, so we also need to innovate ways to generate revenue to pay for all of the work we're trying to do.

In each category below there are volunteer, intern and partner opportunities. Email ten.knilhtrae|2rotnemrotut#ten.knilhtrae|2rotnemrotut or connect with Dan Bassill on Twitter, LinkedIN or Facebook to inquire about involvement.

Information Management

Web Researcher and Links Manager —Collect and maintain the information and links on the T/MC Web site. Volunteers search the internet for new links, check existing links and organize online discussions to help people find and use this information. Review LINKS section on portal, one by one. If link is broken, report it using the "broken link" feature. If link works, review what the site offers, and write a review. Rate the value of the site from the perspective of a potential visitor who is part of a tutor/mentor program. Find the Contact US area, or the staff listing, and send an email introducing yourself, telling the group that they are linked on the T/MC site, and that we encourage them to be part of the next Tutor/Mentor Leadership Conference.

Program Locator Research and Understanding - Volunteers help maintain the program information in the T/MC database, and web site and use surveys and other forms of learning to build a better understanding of the different types of tutoring and/or mentoring programs operating in different parts of the city , as well as of the different need for such programs, or more programs, in different neighborhoods.

Get to know the Tutor/Mentor Programs near your university.
One project that a class could adopt would be to use the T/MC program locator, and your own list of community contacts, to build a growing understanding and involvement with all of the tutor/mentor programs in the area served by the University. For instance, in 2009 Loyola University Chicago listed 42 tutor and/or mentor programs as community partners. Student interns could reach out to these programs and make sure each is listed on the T/MC Program Locator, has updated links, effective web sites, and knows how to use T/MC maps in their own outreach and advocacy. If teams from the different universities in the Chicago region took this role, the data T/MC shares would be more accurate, and the support for programs in each sector would be stronger, because of the university role.

Gold Medal in Public Service - This group is surveying businesses and foundations and faith groups, collecting information of the leadership strategies of different types of groups, and building an understanding of different ways leaders encourage volunteer and donor involvement in one, or more, tutor/mentor programs in the city. The information collected is part of the links library, and is used to facilitate small group meetings and public recognition, that results in a constant "competition" among resource providers to improve what they are doing to help tutor/mentor programs help kids each year. This is a concept of "comparative recognition". By recognizing the good things one company is doing, in a public way, we encourage it and its peers to try to do even better the following year.

Map the resources of your university and act as an intermediary, or a Tutor/Mentor Connection network-builder, to connect these resources to the T/MC and our mission. Here's an example of how the different departments at Northwestern University were mapped by an alum serving a one-year fellowship with T/MC.

Event Organization

Chicagoland Tutor/Mentor Volunteer Recruitment Campaign—Work on a year-round basis to develop and implement strategies that recruit volunteers for tutor/mentor programs in the Chicago region. Raise funds to support the campaign. Time commitment: approx. 4-6 hours per month

Tutor/Mentor Leadership Conference and Volunteer Training—Organize the May and November leadership conferences and eConferences. Provide training, education and support to volunteers, leaders, and business, media and philanthropic partners. Time commitment: approx. 3-6 hours per month

Public Relations

Here are links to some articles about the Tutor/Mentor Connection.
Help us increase the number of people who visit this web site and use this information, and you play a valuable role in helping us connect inner city kids in long-term volunteer-based programs.

Communications—Prepare publications, brochures and other media used to connect youths, volunteers, parents, donors and other stakeholders with each other and the tutor/mentor community. Here are videos created by Chinese and Koren interns, sharing T/MC strategies in their own languages. Spanish speaking interns could do the same. Volunteer roles can be ongoing or project-based. Time commitment varies.

Net-Worker—Actively spread the word about tutoring/mentoring to others through church sermons, Web site links, email, letters, or word-of-mouth. This is the easiest and possibly most important role anyone can take. Just by encouraging someone to visit this Web site you enlarge the army of tutors/mentors and resource builders in Chicago. Time commitment varies.

Blogger—Write about tutoring and mentoring in blogs and forums. Here are blogs written by interns from various universities. Time commitment varies.

Fund Raising

Fund raising—Raise funds to support T/MC or other tutor/mentor programs in Chicago. Become a champion of tutoring/mentoring in your company, church or civic organization. Help organize fund raising events, write grant proposals and recruit a network of potential donors. This type of fund raising can be intended to raise funds for all tutor/mentor programs in Chicago or another city, not just Cabrini Connections. Time commitment varies.

Business School Connection - The goal is to enlist students at graduate business schools in different cities to be the marketing and resource building arm of a Tutor/Mentor Connection strategy. Help develop this concept into a reality.


Technology Planning —Determine necessary technologies, acquire technologies through a variety of fund raising efforts, and work with Technology Coordinator and volunteers to maximize use of technologies. Help keep the Wiki content current, and formatted. Help other people learn to use the Wiki for collaboration with each other, and our staff and board members. Time commitment: approx. 4-8 hours per month.

Database/documentation/Technology Committee — The goal of this group is to develop and maintain interactive Internet-based databases that can be used to collect and share information. Currently Cabrini Connections and the Tutor/Mentor Connection collect and maintain information on a variety of databases which are not connected. This creates an inefficiency and redundancy. The primary goal of this committee is to develop a web-based database that collects information from various entry points and supports multiple users and purposes. SEE OHATS and PROGRAM LOCATOR Projects. Both need database support. Time commitment varies.

GIS Mapping and Marketing—Build the GIS mapping capacity of T/MC and create map views and Web pages that show where tutor/mentor programs are needed and where they are located. Show how this concept can be applied in other cities, and in other causes. Look for earned income opportunities. Time commitment: approx. 4-6 hours per month.

Evaluation and Documentation Committee — We're looking for people who can look at data and "create sense and understanding" so we can use the data to constantly improve, while also convincing donors to fund our on-going efforts. This group has a research background and a business “track and chart” mentality. They want to document everything and look at the outcomes of the program from a dozen different angles. Their mission is to build systems that make it easier to collect actions and outcomes from volunteers, students and other stakeholders, as well as to analyze, evaluate and share this information with an extended network of program leaders and supporters throughout the country. Read more about documenting actions in Cabrini Connections, and documenting actions in Tutor/Mentor Connection.

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