Mentor2Youth has worked with Eastern Michigan University’s Upward Bound program, which is a very honorable program. They focus on academic enrichment for oneself and for college readiness. They also provide great experience for each student that can further their minds exponentially.
Mentor2Youth gave training to the students to be mentors and giving them an opportunity to experience being mentors. Each student lives in the Ypsilanti area and goes to a school in Ypsilanti for multiple years. I interviewed the lead mentors from this program (Olivia, James, Dominique, Arianna, and Elijah) .They as a group decided that Ypsilanti is not all bad, just depends on the area.
“Ypsilanti in certain places are crazy, lame, chilled, small, nice, horrible, and like a family because it seems everybody knows everybody” as each Upward Bound Student stated.
When asked “If given the power to change Ypsilanti as they want it, what would you change” – “Dominique, Olivia, and Arianna” pondered with the thought. They came to the conclusion of not changing anything.
After a long thought James felt he would change the roads.
Elijah feels that Ypsilanti would be a fine city if he could drop the crime rate.
Each upward bound student agreed that a lot of people’s attitudes need to change.
Olivia, Arianna, and Domonique would leave because they find it boring, they don’t like the people, they been here too long, and hate the weather. James and Elijah would stay because of the people, they been here so long, and they like the eateries in Ypsilanti.
James said, “Mentor2Youth gives the kids help, strong leadership, and guidance they may not be getting at home”. Many of the Upward Bound students nodded their head in agreement.
The students feel there are pros and cons to Mentor2Youth.
The Pros are:
Dominique & Olivia says “The kids are nice, and it helps the kids”
“It allows kids to look up to someone” says James
“It keeps them from doing bad things with their time” says Elijah.
The cons are:
“It needs a stronger behavior system” says Arianna.
“Some kids aren’t getting the full impact they need” says James.
In the end, the Upward Bound students still feel they can be successful in Ypsilanti and will graduate high school.
This concludes our weekly Youth Speak Interview