Teacher / Mentor Resources
Dedicated architecture students, architects, engineers, construction managers, facility planners, manufacturers and suppliers contribute their time in mentoring middle school students through the competition, so that learning about facility planning, design and the built environment can take place.
The SchoolsNEXT Design Competition gives students, teachers and mentors a unique opportunity to work together as a planning team, providing students with hands-on experience in solving real life problem as a member of a design and planning team. Mentorship is key to the success of the program.
Mentorship refers to a developmental relationship between a student and a professional adult, which serves to further the student's career skills and knowledge. It is a tool that will help students to grow. Mentorship extends learning beyond the curriculum, develops self-esteem with career-related responsibility, opens access to community role models and demonstrates that career development is continuous. Mentorship challenges and enhances students' strengths, talents and interests, thereby providing critical connections between schools and careers.
Students gain access to highly skilled and motivated leaders, who are remarkably resourceful and demonstrate what will be expected of them as they become contributing adult members of society. The mentors work in the various fields of knowledge that contribute to creating outstanding learning environments and healthy, vital communities: facility planners, architects, engineers, realtors, economic developers, city planners, green building advocates, construction managers, federal agency representatives.
The mentor's job is to promote intentional learning by acting as a technical advisor. They can share their "how to do it so it turns out right" stories, as well as "here's how I fixed what went wrong." Successful mentoring means sharing responsibility for learning. Most importantly, the successful mentor will encourage the students to have fun with their project.
Best of all, mentoring can be one of the most satisfying and rewarding experiences you will ever have. Volunteering as a mentor requires a significant commitment of your time and energy, but it is a fun and enjoyable experience. To create and facilitate the structures and opportunities for those kinds of powerful connections is a significant part of working thoughtfully with educational and social systems in which students are genuinely affirmed and encouraged to build self-confidence.
Would you like to be a mentor?