UChicago RISC

A platform making it simple for anyone to start an effective peer mentorship program

Technology

Next.js, React.js, Apollo GraphQL, Google Cloud Platform

NPOs involved

Center for RISC

Team

Ashley Zhu, Serene Supakkul, Max Wu, Kevin Li, Ingrid Chang, Joanna Chen, Adithya Nair, Steve Jiang, Stephanie Doan, Bryan Song, Carter Bian, Catherine Hu, Chinmaya Vempati

Problem

71% of Fortune 500 companies have peer mentorship programs, and in these programs, 97% of participants find it to be valuable. However, most communities (such as college organizations and local support groups) do not have such infrastructure, and their mentorship programs are often run by a single administrator.

Creating an effective mentorship structure is difficult due to some persistent barriers:

  • A burdened admin: Peer mentorship leaders use multiple platforms, like Google Forms for matching, Slack for communication, and Microsoft Excel to manage programs. Scattered information and communication makes it difficult for a single person to manage, let alone scale, their mentorship program.
  • Neglect in relationships: Because admins are often bogged down by the sheer amount of logistics required to run the programs, they are constricted in their ability to focus on other important aspects of peer mentorships, such as creating better matches, ensuring better experiences, and tracking outcomes.
  • Solution

    We are collaborating with the Center for Radical Innovation for Social Change (RISC) at the University of Chicago to build Mentor Center, a one-stop-shop integrating key mentorship functionalities. By reducing the time spent on logistics, there is less friction for anyone interested in a cause to start and maintain an effective, sustainable mentorship program for it.

    Progress

    We have built our MVP and refined it through internal testing processes. This Fall, we are beta testing it with mentorship programs across the country, based in universities including Stanford, UChicago, Brown, and UCLA.

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    Last updated August 15th, 2021

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