Peer Mentors: First Year Experience

Peer Mentors Fall 2018 group pic

First-Year Seminars include fun activities to build community within the class, and topics covered may include: history and learning at the University, career exploration, information technology, and the role of culture and diversity in academic study. If you are a student enrolled in a First Year Seminar and/or Learning Community you will have a Peer Mentor assigned to you.

What Is A Peer Mentor?

Peer Mentors (typically sophomores, juniors, seniors, or graduate students) assist first-year students by serving as an academic peer advisor, a resource to the campus and community, and a mentor to assist with the transition to Sacramento State. Peer Mentors collaborate with assigned department faculty to enhance the classroom experience for students.

Peer Mentors and First-Year Seminars are on the list of high-impact practices according to the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U).

Students enrolled in First-Year Seminars at Sac State have a 4.7% higher retention rate than their peers who are not enrolled in a seminar (Fall Semester 2015-Fall Semester 2016) and 96% of students reported (during academic year 2017-18) that their Peer Mentor had a positive influence on their transition to the campus. It works!

peer mentor assisting a studentPeer Mentors doing Stingers Uppeer mentors holding clipboards

Services provided by your Peer Mentor

Peer mentors will help provide guidance to students in many ways, covering various topics, including:

  • One-on-one academic advising
  • Study groups
  • Time management, study skills, general education workshops
  • Getting involved in student/campus life at Sacramento State
  • My Sac State – one-stop student portal
  • Referral to faculty with relevant academic and/or career information
  • Campus resources available to support academic, personal and career development
  • General support and encouragement

Peer Mentors schedule at least two meetings with each student in their seminar, throughout the semester. The first is an introductory meeting, the second is an advising session in preparation for registration for the next semester. Both meetings are mandatory.

Becoming a Peer Mentor

If you are interested in becoming a Peer Mentor, recruitment for each fall semester begins in the prior February. The job application is posted on Hornet Career Connection at the beginning of February. An initial meet and greet for the selected Peer Mentors is held in early-May, and mandatory training takes place in August prior to the beginning of the semester.

Any questions about Peer Mentors or recruitment can be sent to the First Year Experience/Peer Mentor Program Coordinator, Chris Kent at chris.kent@csus.edu