PYD’s 2015 Fellows are current Mentor Match participants that applied and were accepted to take on an additional leadership role without the program. Over the course of this summer, they developed their leadership and public speaking skills, and were an important voice for our Mentor Match program. Fellows received leadership training and cultivated their public speaking skills by sharing their experience at recruiting events. Fellows also contributed ideas for programming and recruitment at meetings with Mentor Match staff.
Below, one of our Fellows, Tonio, shares about his experience as a Fellow, and the impact mentoring has had on his life.
First of all, I want thank Kristin Humphrey and Steve Slowinski for allowing me to be a part of this excellent program. I gained a lot experience from the PYD Summer Fellows program and it helped me to follow my dreams! This past summer I had an opportunity to do several presentations about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), including speaking at the Massachusetts Commonwealth Office, Wheelock College, the State House, and Perkins School for the Blind.
When I first met my mentor, he was as excited to hangout with me as I was with him. First my mentor took me on a tour of his job around the campus of MIT. While we were there, we went to the MIT museum. I am so excited to have a mentor like Niraj because he always tells me to never give up and that I can make something happen in my life. Niraj is like a brother to me, the first time we met we really connected. He loves music just like me and he encourages me to never let people take your talent away!! I am looking forward to become a leader like my mentor Niraj!
I am blessed to share with you that on August 18, 2015 I finally got my learner’s permit. My Grandparents always told me if you want something, chase after it. Never give up on it, just believe in yourself and everything will fall into place.
PYD Summer Fellows gained important leadership skills that will allow them to be powerful voices for change and empower them to reach personal and professional their goals. It is exciting to see the leadership Tonio and the other Fellows have developed and the perseverance with which they have pursued their goals. We can’t wait to see what our Fellows will accomplish next!