WISDOM program introduced to provide mentors to students

Hundreds of students participated in the College of Health and Human Development graduation on Tuesday. Photo credit: John Saringo-Rodriguez / Photo Editor

Beginning this spring semester, the University Student Union (USU) will be offer a new mentoring program geared to help black female students succeed in academics and identity development.

The WISDOM program, which is Women Inspired to Succeed and Discover Opportunities through Mentoring, will allow students to have one on one mentorship with a member of the CSUN faculty.

Benefits of this service include networking with campus professionals, celebrating black identity and successfully navigating academics, according to the program’s page.

Monica Benavidez, WISDOM program organizer, said the student and mentor will arrange the times they will meet.

“We’re going to be pairing up students with mentors and then from there they take it on their own,” Benavidez said. “The mentor and [student] are going to be meeting up monthly in order to promote their social capital on campus and to be able to enhance their black female identity.”

In addition to mentoring, the WISDOM program will offer workshops such as identity development in order to further help students.

“We’re going to be providing workshops and socials so that the students can be around and social with empowered and already successful black females on campus,” Benavidez said.

The program will cater to students’ schedule and they will be able to choose what days they want to meet with their mentors.

The program is inclusive to all class levels, but is geared toward attracting freshmen and sophomores.

“Research shows that first year and second year students are the ones that need the support, which is why we’re striving towards gaining their attention,” Benavidez said. “For transfer students its going to be there second year here. We’re trying to be all inclusive so if a student needs support we will try to make proper accommodations.”

DeJa Lewis, psychology major, said this program sounds beneficial.

“I’m currently a senior graduating this spring,” Lewis said. “I wish this service would have been available sooner. I’m sure I would have benefited from one-on-one mentoring.”

Jada Evans, sociology major, showed interest in joining the program.

“I actually wasn’t aware that this program even existed,” Evans said. “I think it’s a great idea to provide females with strong female role models. I’m definitely going to look into it and other girls should too.”

Students interested in the program should apply online before Feb. 17.

For more information, students can visit the USU or go to the program’s website.