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Being A Mentor – Escambia County students leave class to learn from area professionals

By By RYAN CARTER
Advance Publisher
Escambia County schools and local businesses are working together to educate seventh and eighth grade students through a new mentor program.
The program exposes students to life in the real world by allowing them to leave the classroom and spend a day working with a professional. Students spend four hours a day, one day a month working in the field.
The five month program is designed to give gifted students a learning experience in a field that interests the student.
One of the students participating in the program is Murray Stephens a student at Escambia County Middle School. Stephens is working at Atmore Community Hospital.
When asked why she chose ACH, Stephens said she didn't know much about the hospital and saw it as a great opportunity to learn more about the local facility.
Stephens spent part of her day working with Greg Wearren lab manager at ACH.
Wearren said he thought it was a good idea to expose students to real world settings.
Each student participating in the program has several responsibilities. They include:
being punctual, polite, helpful and interested,
completing the five month program (January through May),
keeping a journal of the mentorship experience,
presenting a documentary program with visual aids to the class at the end of the program,
completing a Type III project in conjunction with the subject matter,
passing a five question comprehensive exam at the end of the program.
The mentors responsibilities include:
facilitating and guiding the student's learning while allowing independence and self direction,
sharing knowledge, guidance and experience with the student,
demonstrating and providing guidance in the method of inquiry in the subject matter (such as deductive reasoning skills used in deciding on a certain treatment for an animal in a Veterinarian's office),
sharing with the student direction in locating relevant resources of information on the subject being studied,
submitting five post test questions on the subject and the experience of the mentorship program to the enrichment instructor for the student to complete as part of the student's evaluation (May).
completing a short evaluation form on the student and program.
Other students and businesses participating in the program include:
Chelsea Daniel from Escambia County Middle School is working with Shirley West at Turtle Point; Courtney McCall from Flomaton Middle School is working with Charles and Tim Godwin; Zachary McGhee of Escambia County Middle School is working with Tommy Gerlach at Gerlach's Restaurant; Justin Johnson of Flomaton Middle School is working with Rodney Owens at Health Plus Chiropratic; Henry Tessier from Flomaton Middle School is working with Dr. Lynn Gill at Jefferson Davis Community College; Andrew Oden from Flomaton Middle School is working with Lisa Howell in the Flomaton High School chemistry lab; Randy Batchler from Neal Middle School is working with Dr. Lynn Gill; Ryan Woods of Flomaton Middle School is working with Dr. Tommy Moore at Atmore Animal Hospital; Brianne Vallenari from Neal Middle School is working with Charles and Tim Godwin and Alisha Linam from Escambia County Middle School is working with Debra Smith, band director at ECMS.