Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Local mentors meet Randolph science students

Participants in Randolph College’s summer program for first-year science, math, and engineering students recently met mentors who will provide advice and direction as the students advance through science programs and pursue careers.

Genevieve Neale '93, right, talks with Anthony Quinn '17, a student she will mentor
as part of the SUPER program for students interested in science careers.
The students and mentors held their first meeting at lunch on Monday. They will continue to meet throughout the academic year so the mentors can help the guide the students toward their goals.

Mentorship is an important part of Step Up to Physical Science and Engineering at Randolph (SUPER), a program funded by the National Science Foundation. The program aims to help students excel in science and engineering curricula and pursue crucial careers.

Kelly Hazlegrove, an environmental scientist at the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, said she enjoyed the opportunity to meet the SUPER student she will mentor. She added that she sees this as an opportunity to help students turn an interest in science into a life direction. “At that age, they might not be aware of the career paths available to them. This will open doors for them,” Hazlegrove said. “The mentoring can help guide them in their studies.”

Sienna Brown '17 talks with her mentor in the SUPER program.
Three alumnae of the College are serving as mentors for the students: Rebecca VanWitzenburg Skeen ’05, a research and development chemist at C.B. Fleet; Ruth Herbert Maragni ’80, a registered nurse and human resources official for Centra Health; and Genevieve Neale ’93, owner and veterinarian for Paw Prints Mobile Medicine for Pets.

“We have matched each SUPER student with an industry professional who works in a career in which the student is interested,” said Peter Sheldon, a Randolph physics professor who directs the SUPER program. “We expect that the mentors will become a friend, a guide, and a resource that will help our students find their way to their passion. We expect that these mentoring relationships will aid our students in finding their career path, will help to provide them with meaningful internships, and will ultimately lead to a career in science.”