If you are interested in participating in the Wilmington College Connections program, please complete our short questionnaire.
As you may very well know, the first semester is by far the most critical semester in an incoming student’s college career. We have found that many first year students become overwhelmed with the adjustment from high school life to college life. To help with that, Wilmington College is proud to offer your student an opportunity to participate in the Wilmington College Connections Peer Support Program (WCC).
Here’s how our program works: we match an entering student with a current WC student who is a part of our peer support team and will serve as a resource and mentor for your first year student. Our peer mentors are current WC students who have demonstrated the skills and leadership qualities necessary for being role models for our incoming students. Peer mentors will help assist the new students with many of the concerns that may face entering freshmen.
Throughout the year, students in the program are introduced to various activities and opportunities specific to the WCC. The program does not interfere with any of the normal freshmen activities, in fact, the program augments these programs and promotes participation in campus-wide functions.
Following your student’s first year, they are offered an opportunity to remain in the program as part of our leadership track which will hopefully encourage them to become a peer support mentor in their third year.
If you choose to attend Wilmington College and interested in this program, please complete the Connections Program Application.
Is it a mandatory program?
No. The program is primarily voluntary; however, the benefits of mentoring are far too numerous to ignore, and we strongly encourage you to consider taking part.
Who and how many students are involved in the program?
The program is largely comprised of students from historically underrepresented populations. These include students from varying demographics that include, but are not limited to: racial/ethnic, geographic, sexual orientation, gender identity, and socioeconomic backgrounds. An average of 30-35 first-year students and 10-15 mentors participate each year.
How are students selected for the program?
Students who have paid their enrollment deposits are notified of the program and encouraged to apply. When making selections, ideally, we look for those who want to be in the program, however, there have been instances when students with extenuating circumstances have been placed in the program as an added level support.
What exactly is required of the participating freshman student?
First year students in the program are asked to communicate on a regular basis with their assigned peer support mentor and the program steering committee, if necessary. Students are also required to attend all program events with their mentor, and to take full advantage of any helpful resources that the college and this program may provide.
What is required of the peer support mentor?
Peer support mentors are expected to meet in person and on a weekly basis with their assigned mentees and serve as a resource person. They will also refer them to the appropriate college offices and student organizations for any needed assistance. They are also expected to plan and implement at least one monthly social event with their mentees. Lastly peer support mentors are asked to submit a written progress/activity report for each mentee. These reports are collected by the program supervisor and reviewed by the steering committee.
How are mentors selected and who are they accountable to?
Initially mentors apply for the program. Selection is mainly based on the applicant’s GPA, leadership ability, on-campus involvement and passion for serving others (as expressed via a submitted essay). Once the selection process is completed, all mentors go through initial training and are accountable to a designated member of the Wilmington College Connections Program Steering Committee (made up of WC administrators).
How are peer support mentors /first-year student matches determined?
We try our best to create matches that benefit both parties. Matches are determined by various factors, that include gender, hometown, athletic involvement, general interests, academic majors and prior acquaintances.
If my student participates in the program, are they still able to take advantage of the College’s other services?
Absolutely. Our program is designed to help students integrate and feel more comfortable.
If my student chooses not to participate in the Wilmington College Connections Program will their chances of success at WC be hindered?
We certainly hope not. While we understand that the WCC may not be for everyone, we have found that students who become involved and engaged in on-campus programming certainly have a higher persistence rate than those who do not.