The Mentor Advocate Partnership program (MAP) celebrated its fifth anniversary with an End of Year Celebration on May 9 at the Hyatt Regency Cambridge. MAP, coordinated by the Office of Minority Education, is a volunteer mentoring program seeking to foster the holistic development of students along academic and nonacademic dimensions. It is a fun way to give back and reconnect to the MIT community, offering experience and support to incoming freshmen and sophomores.
The End of Year Celebration brought together MAP mentors and protégés, as well as Institute-wide program advocates, for a celebratory dinner interspersed with personal testimonies and awards that honored the relationships facilitated by this program. Julie Norman, director of undergraduate advising and academic programming (UAAP), shared a moving personal testament to the power of her own mentor/protégé relationships over the five years she has served as a mentor. Several protégés, including Devin Cornish ’14 and Khalea Robinson ’11 (via letter), offered their own insights into how their mentors have supported and inspired them at the Institute and beyond.
Awards acknowledging outstanding participation in MAP were given to mentors and protégés alike. Some highlights included:
- Beatriz Valdez, admissions counselor in the Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education (DUE), who received the “Eager Beaver” Rookie Mentor of the Year Award for her energy, resourcefulness, guidance and inspiration as a first year mentor;
- Alyce Johnson, manager of staff diversity and inclusion in the Human Resources Department, was awarded the “Road MAP” Mentor of the Year award for her guidance, direction, and embodiment of the true spirit of mentoring; and
- Class of 1922 Professor of Physics John Belcher and his protégé, Harry Sanabria ’15, were awarded the “Ionic Bond” award for their virtual inseparability and “natural chemistry” throughout the year.
Other mentors acknowledged for their outstanding MAP participation were Kathy Cooksey, Lisa Coviello, Bonny Kellermann, Sandy Tenorio and Hakim Walker, each receiving the “Titanium” Mentor Award for their durability, reliability and dependability. Sharon Bridburg, Kirsten Derrickson, Debroah Hodges-Pabon, Sandy Tenorio and Tobie Weiner were awarded the “Tungsten” Longevity Award for their tireless service in the MAP program for at least four years.
Among those in attendance were current mentor DiOnetta Jones, associate dean and director of the Office of Minority Education, who offered words of welcome and reflection; future mentor Dan Hastings, dean for undergraduate education; and current mentor Ed Bertschinger, professor of physics and head of the physics department.