Tutor/Mentor Connection

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Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference


Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference

Tutor/Mentor Connection/Institute, LLC hosted Leadership and Networking Conference in Chicago every six months from May 1994 to May 2015. Conferences have not been held since due to lack of financial support, but we continue to attempt to engage people in on-line networking and idea sharing using social media and forums like this.  

Website: http://www.tutormentorconference.org
Location: Chicago, IL
Members: 19
Latest Activity: Jun 28, 2016

Tutor/Mentor Leadership and Networking Conference in Chicago

This map outlines the information and ideas the Tutor/Mentor Connection and Tutor/Mentor Institute, LLC have collected over the past 20 years. We have shared this via web sites, blogs and social media. In addition, every six months since May of 1994 we've hosted a conference in Chicago to invite people in our network and involved in building, operating, sustaining and participating in volunteer-based tutoring and/or mentoring programs to come together to share ideas, build relationships and innovate ways to draw resources to each of us so we can all do our work better each year. Visit the web site and see more about the conference. Join the discussion here and help shape what happens, and what you can get out of it.

While we hope to continue face-to-face events, more people can be connected to each other and these ideas via on-line networking and learning. I encourage you to embed this Debategraph into your own blog or web site. Encourage your students, volunteers, donors and leaders to add their own ideas. Then work with us to engage more people in using this information to help kids living in economically disadvantaged areas.

The most recent conference was May 8, 2015 at the Metcalfe Federal Building in Chicago. There has not been a formal conference since then, due to lack of funds. However, with your help we can use this space to bring more people to these ideas and focus on actions that help tutor/mentor programs grow in the coming school year.

Discussion Forum

Participation in past conferences, 1994 - 2014 1 Reply

Started by Daniel Bassill. Last reply by Daniel Bassill Jun 28, 2016.

Tutor/Mentor Collaboration

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Comment by Daniel Bassill on March 3, 2009 at 5:53pm
I attended an Illinois Afterschool Collaboration meeting today and a couple of ideas came up that I think would be good conference workshops. Can you guys find someone who can lead workshops in these:

a) Logic Models - the foundations are now asking for organizations to have logic models. Here's what I use as the T/MC logic model. Do any of you know someone who can do a workshop on what a logic model is, and why and how to create one?

b) Edutopia has created a focus area titled "A new day for learning" on their web site. On another site you can read about A Broader, Bolder, Approach to Education. Both of these promote the opportunities to create learning and mentoring in the non-school hours and challenge non-school programs to integrate these ideas. Can we get someone from Edutopia to be a keynote to talk about this?
Comment by Daniel Bassill on February 21, 2009 at 10:48pm
I found a ning site on conference planning and here is one article with tips for workshop presenters. It might be useful for all of us.
Comment by Nicole White on February 10, 2009 at 4:32pm
Angel and I met again last Friday, and here are the rough minutes in my notes:
Brainstorming Session Part 3
Friday February 6, 2009

o Theme – We’re in this together
• Surveys – what will cause people to come to the conference
• 1st workshop – sales pitch for T/MC – 10 powerpoint slides at most
o Mission, values, vision
o Stress how we bring value to the social marketplace
o What can it do for you?
• Maya – PR, Politics, Press
• Workshops for Program’s different Positions
• Good keynote speaker
o James Borishade – Jumpstart of Illinois
o Guy from DePaul (Angel)
o Leading Without Power by Max DePree
o Unifying voice – “to bring us together”
• Kit – takeaways, stuff that they value that they take away
o List of programs in neighborhood
• Operations – corporate sponsors
• Professional 100 for T/MC program leaders
o Possible survey? Possible workshop?
• Awards
• Elevator Speech – help
• Mara, Katherine, Alex- how to get involved
• Possibly asking Nicole’s mom (Development Director at a Mentoring Non-profit)
• Make people feel special
• North Park University – Axelson Center for Non-Profit Management
o Boot camp for young executive directors
o Program leadership vs. organizational leadership
• Bart – technology
o Statisticians, benchmarking
o Workshop about what Bart does
Comment by Nicole White on February 5, 2009 at 3:41pm
Welcome Chris and Nicole to the group! I'll be letting you guys know how you can get involved in the near future!
Comment by Nicole Sutton on February 5, 2009 at 3:38pm
Im not sure how much time I can commit to actually planning the upcoming conference but I can do my best to promote anything to the Public Allies Chicago network and hopefully particapate/help in some way with the actual conference.
Comment by Nicole White on February 4, 2009 at 3:14pm
Here's a list of some of the people who've been involved with the May Tutor/Mentor Conference Planning Committee so far:
Nicole White - Tutor/Mentor Connection
Angel Diaz - Midtown
Alex Cornwell - Chicago Lights at Fourth Presbyterian Church
Mara O'Brien and Kait Steele- 826 Chi
Jennifer Bricker and Devon Lovell - Family Matters
Katherine Moone - East Village Youth Program
Kim Forehand - Brain Boosters at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church
Bart Phillips - Community Building Tutors
Maya Ashwal - Jobs for Youth
Comment by Daniel Bassill on February 4, 2009 at 11:35am
Here's some information about past conferences that can be used in planning future ones:

List of requested topics, from past conferences, is posted on conference web site.

Attendee list is being used. I received a call from someone at Chicago Public Schools yesterday and they told me they were skimming the list to reach out to people they want to invite to a meeting. Thus, this is a valuable feature.

The conference has a public awareness goal, in addition to information sharing. This public awareness is intended to work like advertising, drawing volunteers and donors directly to the programs participating in the conference, or listed on the T/MC database and links library.

The second conference was held in Nov. 1994, at the Shedd Acquarium. They wrote an article in their magazine featuring the event. At the same time, we began working with Chicago Bar Foundation/Association Lend A Hand Program, and created the idea of a TUTOR/MENTOR WEEK, which would include the conference, a benefit organized by Lend A Hand, and neighborhood events organized by local groups in different parts of the city. Together all of these would generate more attention for tutor/mentor programs than any one by itself. This lasted until about 2001. It's something that could be given new life, and repeated in May.

Awards are a great idea. We launched "best practice" awards in 1998 or 1999 to recognize excellence in specific areas like recruitment, communications, training, etc. These attracted new people to the conference, and helped us build a library of good ideas that could be shared. We discontinued this because we did not have the funds to communicate this widely, so did not get many nominations, and we did not have the staff or volunteer support to judge the nominations. This is still a good idea if it can be supported.

In this context I encourage you to look at the business, university, political and hospital maps on http://mappingforjustice.blogspot.com. If awards can be given in each sector, to recognize the role business or faith groups play in supporting one or all tutor/mentor programs in the city, via leadership, advertising, workplace fund raising, volunteer involvement, etc. we can stimulate greater action by every sector. I've given recognition of the LEND A Hand program since 1994 to support their growth, but also to encourage other business and professional groups to duplicate what they are doing. If law groups in other cities begin to do what LAH does, but better, we'll point the spotlight on them, with hopes that Chicago groups use their ideas to innovate ways they increase their own support to tutor/mentor programs each year.

Marketing. We have promoted the conferences since 2001 almost completely via the internet because of lack of funds to print and mail an invitation, or a call for presenters. From 1994-2000 we also supported the conference with a printed newsletter that went to 8000 (by 2001) people in all parts of t he country. Each issue included information intended to draw people to the web sites, and to the conferences. If we can find sponsor dollars to re-launch a print communications program, we can re-build some of this traffic. However, even without print, we have all sorts of ways to communicate via the Internet. The Business School Connection idea has a similar purpose.

Public Relations partner - from 1993 to 2001 Public Communications Inc was a pro bono partner to Cabrini Connections, Tutor/Mentor Connection. They did the press releases and worked with the media to generate stories. When you visit our office you can look at media books and read articles from the first 10 years. There are many. However, we've not had a PR partner since 2001 and there are fewer articles. If the committee can recruit a PR firm to promote the conferences, and tutoring/mentoring, that will help us all.

Their may be more history that you can draw from, but these are some of the major ideas that I hope you'll incorporate into your planning.
Comment by Nicole White on February 3, 2009 at 5:33pm
Angel's minutes from the second brainstorming session:
We need a workshop we can invite our volunteers to

Conference Objectives:
How to Run a program
Public Awareness

Collaboration: with other organizations: Programming and Fundraising

Tough economic times workshops

NING: Like pulling teeth to get people to participate: Why? Do they see/get value?

Technology: How to use it in programs

List of all volunteer fairs: We need a physical takeaway…otherwise they’ll get information on web and not come to conference.

Donors ready to give money to an award winning program?

Entertainment? Not really

Community Relations departments at companies: Who/Where can we contact?

Posters: Kids art stuff shown at conference: Peace tiles

Invite professional evaluation groups: Standards in program management

Moderating: Attendance: Tracking Kids….technology related? Bart?

Socail Networking: We need to contact YNPN, Lincoln Park Young Professionals, unemployed young people can help/attend/volunteer

Public Relations: Can we get get the press release showing a list of groups working together.

Latino Caucus: Scholarship dinner…gala, mentor/mentee pair…would require more planning but would get people to pay one evening.

Tapping into measuring qualitative side…seeking help from statisticians

Political groups…partner with Illinois Reform Commission: Tutor/Mentor Index for politicians in their district.
Comment by Nicole White on February 3, 2009 at 5:32pm
Here are my minutes from the first brainstorming session (this was from when we were leading the small group discussions so they will have some different ideas):
• Theme for the conference?
o Tracks of workshops – i.e. like the mentoring young men theme for the May 2007 Conference
o Workshops for different positions (executive directors, development/fundraising directors, curriculum/academic coordinator, etc.), meet the session before lunch to discuss problems, strategies, and solutions for their positions – before lunch so can continue conversation into lunch and make lunch more constructive
 Mara – time spent with people in same job – best practices, not a complaining session

• What has worked in past conferences? What hasn’t?
o Alex – Good keynote speaker is key, such as James Borishade
o Motivating speaker (both keynote and workshops/panels)– possible topics – resources (academic and social), showcasing organizations (every organization has their strength
o Knowing what’s in the neighborhood – i.e. workshop targeting different regions of the city

• Boosting numbers for attendance
o Discounts for a certain number of people from each program who come
o E-mail notification vs. other forms?

• Corporate Sponsors
o Letter for corporate sponsorship
o Work with CPS?
Comment by Nicole White on February 3, 2009 at 5:30pm
Here are Angel's minutes from the first brainstorming session:
Fundraising, best practices, database management, can’t afford Raiser’s Edge

Grant Writing Workshops

Academic workshops, but need time built in to process afterward. (marketing, annual giving)

Database for different tutoring techniques, compiling different program information

Teacher conferences with disability associations, “Table-Talk”, a few facilitators, the group rotates through the centers, share what you know about a topic.

Getting ideas and getting energized. Having a chance to talk b/c we’re all so busy. Just talk about ideas…small activity time.

Finding evaluation tools to use that work. Certain funders want a reading test score that goes up. What works? (especially when tutors are involved, adds a layer of stuff)

Want good relationships with teachers. Want behavior information….how to be connected with schools in the community. Relationship between after school programs and supplemental programs. A forum.

Community resource books for students and parents.

Defining your core service offering.

Elevator Speech help. How do you share, in a kernel, what we do that’s true and compelling. Mission Statement, embodied by staff…how we live the mission when we’re in transition. Can we change the mission? How does it impact the training with the tutors?

Tutor Learning Institute through TMC? TMC workshop?

Partner with Lawyers-Lend-A-Hand for tutoring program of the year award…Bart Phillips idea.

Tutor training workshop for volunteers, reading, motivating students!

What do ED’s want?

What does it take to be an ED?

Coordinators of the program…need resource building in some way.

What does it take to start-up a tutoring program?

Next steps for a tutoring program?

How do we get people to get involved in the conference who want to start a program, just getting out of school, i.e. a senior project.

MBAs from Northwester, U of C, do a focus group. Or a project for volunteers.

The volunteer experience…making it great!

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