SLS: Mentor with HOLLA (2022-23 school year)

Open Opportunity


HOLLA's missions is to change the narrative for youth of color through culturally responsive relationships. Our vision is to break the cycle of poverty for every child in Portland through culturally responsive mentorship

This position is one of the options for Portland State's Student Leaders for Service program. Please apply to the Student Leaders for Service program to express interest in this opportunity. To access the application to apply for SLS for the the 2021-22 school year, please visit

SLS members serving with HOLLA would act as a mentor for a student (1st through 12th grades) as well as an advocate on PSU’s campus. We are not your average volunteering or mentoring position. We ask mentors to really SHOW UP in student’s lives. This means connecting with families as well as acting as an advocate for that student both in and out of school.  Our mentees are students of color that would benefit from a positive adult role model to consistently connect with them. As a mentor, you will be participating in changing the narrative for youth of color by engaging in a relationship from a culturally responsive lens and by participating in spreading the word about our organization at PSU.

While you will meet independently with your student (usually at their school) we also provide optional opportunities for you and your student to connect on weekend field trips and activities throughout the year.

Mentors can also mentor remotely, as needed. 

SLS Member Roles/Responsibilities:

  • Mentor a student
    • 2-4 hours per week with the student (flexible based on schedules)
    • Communicate with families and school regarding updates
    • Provide weekly session reports from time with student
    • Attend occasional weekend field trips with students

  • Provide leadership in developing relationships between PSU and HOLLA in order to raise awareness on campus
    • Volunteer to table at events or speak in classes representing HOLLA at PSU
  • Assist in planning events for HOLLA mentors and mentees to increase college access and provide enrichment
    • Plan and coordinate a PSU visit for HOLLA students/mentors in Spring 2022

  • Maintain open communication with HOLLA team including a monthly meeting and quick weekly check-in via email/phone

  • Use social media to help spread awareness and advocacy

Skills and Knowledge Required: Culturally Responsive mindset and practices are important to mentoring with HOLLA. Excellent communication and time management skills will be essential in helping an SLS member to be successful.

Preferred Qualifications: Access to reliable transportation (public transit or otherwise), first-generation or students of color who identify with lived experiences of our mentees preferred.

Orientation and Training: Saturday August 28, 2021 is our full day new mentor training. Additional follow up trainings happen the first Monday of each month with the exception of December/June. Student is required to attend at least 2 of the additional sessions.

Benefits of this Positions: We benefit from the student's connection to the PSU campus and weekly hours to invest in a young person and their family. SLS member will benefit from the opportunity for leadership development, networking, and a relational organization committed to our community. Students will be able to collaborate with other mentors on a bi-monthly basis at our mentor events and to collaborate in planning the PSU visit and PSU outreach.

Location & Transportation: The location for this role varies depending on which student SLS member is matched with and where they agree to meet with the mentee. Most mentors are matched with students in outer Southeast Portland or Gresham -- e.g. from Alder Elementary (174th/Stark) or Gilbert Park Elementary (136th & Ramona).

Schedule Available: Flexible schedule with mentors meeting a minimum of 2 hours per week with mentee. Ideally Monday nights are available for mentor gatherings and Saturday mornings for field trips - but mentee meeting times are flexible. Additional projects, event planning, and preparation will bring SLS students to the required 4 hours/week for the program. 

Supervision: The SLS member will directly report to our Match Coordinator Izear Smith for mentoring support. For SLS support they would report to Chelsea Jones West.

Our organization was founded and is led by BIPOC. We specifically recruit board members and mentors who reflect the community we serve so that we are by and for the community. We are open to individuals from all identities and backgrounds. 

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