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New Mentorship Program Will Keep Talent in CNY

New Mentorship Program Will Keep Talent in CNY (4/23/2021)

In the coming weeks, Believe in Syracuse will launch a brand new mentorship program that will benefit our region in not one, not two, but in three(!) big ways. The Greater Syracuse Career Mentoring Program will increase educational opportunities for students by helping them hone career skills, which will boost college graduation rates throughout our region, and within a few years, this will ultimately fuel our regional economy by helping local employers find and keep quality local talent.

When the Greater Syracuse Career Mentoring (GSCM) program launches later this month, it will be the most engaging, supportive mentoring program in Central New York. The program will kick off with 30 Say Yes Scholars from the Syracuse City School District who will be connected with 15-30 local college-educated professionals to help the students sharpen career skills and show them how their skillsets and talents can directly benefit employers here, in Central New York.

But they still need mentors!  Volunteering as a mentor is about a 5-10 hour commitment per month, and the investment will leave a measurable impact in our community. Interested professionals should go to/contact mentoring@believeinsyracuse.org.

Students and mentors will be connected through a new, interactive digital platform. This portal is convenient during the pandemic and times of social distance, but it also positions GSCM to be successful well into the future as the program expands, to help students who want to attend colleges outside of Central New York.

Believe in Syracuse hopes to double participation next year, and by 2025, organizers project 50% of GSCM participants will become Central New York employees.

“More than half of adults in Central New York have only the equivalent of, or less than, a high school diploma. With many Say Yes Scholars being first-generation college students, they may not feel like they will have opportunities to find a career here after they graduate,” said Ahmeed Turner, Executive Director of Say Yes Syracuse and Sergeant of Arms at Believe in Syracuse, and one of the GSCM founders. “Our program will help shift that perspective, and these mentoring relationships will help students feel a stronger connection to our community.”

By fostering this sense of belonging now, more students will choose to stay in Central New York to start their careers, helping local employers find talent. This will provide a boost to the Central New York economy and build a stronger community.

“We are being strategic about how we match Say Yes scholars with professionals in our community where interests and opportunities align,” said Sally Sayles-Hannon, President of the Board of Directors for Believe in Syracuse. “We are excited to launch this program and provide a boost to the local economy. The Greater Syracuse Career Mentoring Program directly supports Believe in Syracuse’s mission to create partnerships, drive success and promote pride throughout Greater Syracuse and Central New York to contribute to sustaining a stronger community.”

Believe in Syracuse is grateful for the support of the Community Foundation of Central New York to launch this groundbreaking program, along with community partners including the Syracuse City School District, Hillside Work Scholarship, volunteers and mentors.

Since its inception in 2013, Believe in Syracuse has partnered with several local organizations to support educational needs and address equity gaps.

About Believe in Syracuse
Believe in Syracuse is a non-profit volunteer organization that creates partnerships, drives progress and promotes pride throughout Syracuse and Central New York. The organization, established in 2013, strives to cultivate an inclusive community and network through retaining and attracting engaged residents, building civic engagement, and enhancing the well-being of community to drive continued success.

Contact Us

Are you inspired by the goals and approach of Say Yes or have questions about scholarships? We invite you to subscribe to our mailing list, set an appointment, or reach out to and learn more about how you can get involved.

Ahmeed Turner, Executive Director

Dana Lyons, Manager, Post-Secondary Scholarship Access and Completion