Nov 2006 agenda

This ONE-DAY conference will be held at the DePaul University Conference Center in downtown Chicago at 1E. Jackson.

The Theme of this Conference is

Collaboration and Capacity Building
Critical Challenges Facing Volunteer-Based Tutoring/Mentoring


Overview of Conference
The format of the Nov. 2006 conference will be different than the format of previous T/MC conferences. We will meet for one day, with only 4 presentation topics (see below). Our maximum capacity is 100 people. Our goal is to stimulate thinking, and bring together people willing to work together to overcome challenges facing non-school volunteer-based tutoring/mentoring programs, and communities that seek to develop comprehensive tutor/mentor strategies.  During the conference the T/MC will interview participations for a video documentary to be created following the conference.  In addition, participants are encouraged to submit questions prior to the conference, by posting them in the Conference Discussion Section of .    If you would like to participate, or have questions about the conference, email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

What I Gain from Tutor/Mentor Conference. View video at

We thank Pat Quinn, Lt. Governor of Illinois for serving as Honorary Chairperson for the May and November 2006 conferences. Read his welcome letter

7:30 am  Registration Open - Continental Breakfast

8:30 am   Call to Order/Welcome -- Rev. Steve Braxton, President of Marketplace Consulting, member of Board of Directors, Black United Fund of Illinois, Inc.

8:45 - 9:30: KeynoteUnderstanding and Facilitating the Youth Mentoring Movement, David L. DuBois, Ph.D.
Dr. David L. DuBois is a Professor in the Division of Community Health Sciences within the School of Public Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago (Based on a Social Policy Report by Dr. David DuBois and Dr. Jean Rhodes. Read the report at

9:40 ? 10:50 first panel ? tutor/mentor program leaders

Part one--- Overview of Tutor/Mentor Chicago Program Locator as a tool for drawing volunteers and donors to tutor/mentor programs throughout a metropolitan area. Presented by Daniel F. Bassill, President, Tutor/Mentor Connection

Part two -- Discussion:  Rev. Steve Braxton will lead a discussion and breakout sessions to encourage participating tutor/mentor programs to share information on the following topics:

-    describe what a tutor/mentor program does
-    how does what you do differ from NCLB tutoring or Big Brothers/Big Sisters mentoring?  What are the similarities
-    what works
-    what are the challenges

--- Volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs that seek grants from the Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Lend A Hand Program of Chicago Bar Association are encouraged to attend the conference and share strategies of what works in their programs.

---Information collected from this discussion will be posted in the discussion forums at for further discussion and education of volunteers and donors

11:00 ? 12:10 pm second panel ? Fund Raising Issues and Opportunities

-     Part 1) Impact of $2 million donation by Chicago Sun Times to Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Lend A Hand Program, , on Chicago area, volunteer-based tutor/mentor programs

-    Part 2) opportunities for grant seekers ? Troy Ratliff, The Joseph Kellman Family Foundation and Spruiell D. WeberWhite, Senior Program Officer of The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation - describe ways programs can appeal to donors

-          Submit your questions to Mr. Ratliff and Mr. White by posting questions at Raising questions for Nov. 30

12:10 ? 1:30 ? box lunch, keynote, networking (this is a working lunch. There will be a 20 minute break for phone calls and to get box lunches). Presentations and discussion will start again at 12:45pm.

---  Keynote Speaker: 1:00pm - 1:20pm. Dr. Bennie Lee Harris, PhD., Vice President for Development, Campaign Planning, Fund raising, Corporate and Foundation Relations at De Paul University. Dr. Harris is also at the forefront of philanthropy, community, and volunteer-based leadership-as he gives back to the community working with the 100 Black Men of Chicago to provide mentoring and scholarships to high school students in metropolitan Chicago area. Dr Harris has performed feasibility studies, led, planned, and implemented many fund raising and campaign planning strategies for Washington State Univ., and the Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham.

1: 45 ? 3pm ?  Discussion of Research:  Essential Supports for School Improvement and Academic and Social Support Inititative

Part 1: Essential Supports for School Improvement and Community Context
Presenter: Penny Sebring, Ph.D, Founding Co-Director, Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago

Abstract: This study presents a framework of essential supports and community resources that facilitate school improvement and provides evidence on how the essential supports contribute to improvements in student learning. Of particular interest is the role of parent-community ties in supporting learning. The study also demonstrates that a school?s capacity for improvement is heavily influenced by its community context. Although improving and stagnating schools were found in all kinds of communities, those with particularly strong social capital and low crime rates were likely to have schools with strong essential supports, whereas communities with weak social capital were likely to have weak essential supports in their schools. Read the report, The Essential Supports for School Improvement, published by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago:

Part 2: The Academic and Social Support Initiative:  Building Collaborative and Comprehensive Supports in Schools
Presenters:  Tamara Gathright, Ph. D, Director of Evaluation Research, University of Chicago Center for Urban School Improvement  and Sybil Madison-Boyd, Ph. D, Director of Elementary School Partnerships, University of Chicago Center for Urban School Improvement

Abstract: The Center for Urban School Improvement?s Academic and Social Support Initiative seeks to redefine social support in schools beyond providing assistance to at-risk students. Rather, we aim to promote and sustain healthy environments that facilitate ambitious teaching and learning as well as positive socio-emotional development of all students. Working in a comprehensive and collaborative fashion, our work is guided by a set of seven values about the creation and delivery of social support in schools. In this presentation, we will describe the Academic and Social Support Initiative and our work with charter schools in the Chicago area. Specifically, we will discuss the goals of the overall Initiative and the services, supports, and tools that we provide to achieve these goals.  Finally, we will discuss recommendations for building academic and social support programs in schools.

Other recommended reading in preparation for this panel

-     Read the Policy Brief, Promoting a Systematic Focus on Learning Supports to Address Barriers to Learning and Teaching. found at the UCLA Center for Mental Health in Schools web site  Open the What's New section and follow the links to the Student Support Initiative.

- Read Dr. Robert Halpern's Article, The Big Lie: Reframing Expectations of Afterschool Programs. You can find this at

3:15 to 4:45 ? Collaboration ? Ways we can work together to get more volunteers,  business, media, foundations, etc. involved

Part 1: 3:15 - 4pm Opportunities for colleges and universities to build capacity of community based partners -

Jon Tomaso
, Director of Admission Outreach Programs at Dominican University,  will serve as the panel moderator. The panel of speakers consists of

Andre Meeks is the former Wackerlin Fellow at Aurora University. Mr. Meeks ran the service learning program on campus, researching and selecting non-profits, and coordinating AU students and faculty for projects. Andre and a colleague presented an implementation plan for a campus wide service learning project and integrating it into general education curricula (something that AU is doing now thanks to their work) at the American Association of Colleges and Universities' national conference "General Education and Outcomes that Matter in a Changing World" in March 2006.

Dr. James Kulich is Executive Vice President and Professor of Math at Elmhurst College.  Elmhurst College hosts annual community service awards, has a College Chaplaincy dept. that coordinates community service around the world, and a 10-year old summer math and science program for high school students to get prepared for college & careers.

Felecia Thompson, Executive Associate to the President for Community Partnerships at Trinity Christian College

-     Part 2: 4pm - 4:45 pm Collaboration with Local, State and Federal Partners

John L. Hosteny, Corporation for National and Community Service and Ted Gibbs, Office of Lt. Governor Pat Quinn, and Director of Service Learning for the State Board of Education, will lead this discussion. The goal will be to

  • Provide participants with an opportunity to hear practitioners discuss the successes and challenges involved in supporting mentoring programs

  • Detail how participants can build new partnerships and generate more publicity for their programs

  • Give participants the opportunity to:

    1. offer advice on how the Nov. 30 conference's discussions can and will be continued.

    2. share promising practices that capture every aspect of a mentoring program, from identifying a community need to building collaboration to recruiting an adult mentor who was once a young person whose life changed because of a mentor.

    Open-ended Questions

    o What must be done to ensure that meaningful collaboration is part of every discussion?

    o Let's work on the premise that funding (either public or private) is not available to develop or expand existing programs or networks. What can be done to build sustainable projects that work together to solve community needs?

    o What must be done to build a culture of mentoring in all of Illinois?

    o What needs to be present for a person to be a lifelong volunteer?

    o How do tutoring and mentoring programs help to instill an ethic of service? How can we do a better job of building an arc of service, which takes students from their school days into their professional lives?

    o How can we begin to build a critical mass of practitioners/ supporters in tutoring and mentoring as a methodology?

    o What models can be used as examples for increasing tutoring and mentoring programs in Illinois?

    o What new state policies could be enacted to benefit tutoring and mentoring programs? For example a new policy, which allows state and local workers to become mentors by allowing employees to use time during the workday, such as lunch breaks or flexible work schedules, to mentor young people. Would this policy be helpful for tutoring and mentoring programs?

These discussion questions are also posted at Tutor/Mentor Connection Conference on-line discussion Please introduce yourself on-line before, or after Nov. 30, so you can take an on-going role in this discussion and capacity building collaboration.

4:45PM - 5PM - Closing and Next Steps.


There will be no Display Table at this conference. However, we encourage you to send handouts for sharing with other organizations.

Register on the Internet for Networking and Collaboration before and after the Nov. 30. Go to the Discuss Forum at


Conference Planning Team.
The Tutor/Mentor Conferences are a collaboration of many people. All speakers donate their time, and without this contribution, these conferences would not be possible. Several people are active in planning and hosting. They include, Renee Tucker Martinez and Alexandria Taylor,  Associated Colleges of Illinois, Karen Royster James, Columbia College of Chicago, Rev. Steve Braxton, President of Marketplace Consulting, Ana Llorens, Ariane Lee and Toni Pullen, Cabrini Connections, and Dan Bassill, Tutor/Mentor Connection. 

Conference Volunteers: Rev. Braxton will be assisted by Gachele Coffey, and Kenneth Williams, Sr.  Volunteers from Starbucks will be helping with the conference.

We also thank Ted Gibbs, from the Office of Lt. Governor Patrick Quinn for his help in planning the conference.

eConference Opportunity
Join us in the T/MC Internet portal.
In the Portal  you can participate in a discussion, or launch a new topic that where you can present your own vision and strategy and invite others to join you.  If you already host such a discussion or are hosting e-Conferences focused on building the capacity, quality and availability of non-school, volunteer-based tutoring/mentoring programs, please add your link to the T/MC web site so those who learn in the T/MC portal also have the opportunity to network and learn in your elearning environment.

B) Blog the conference topics 
At you can post comments about the conference and link to others who are blogging the conference and non profit and education issues.    If you are already blogging tutor/mentor topics, and want to link with the Tutor/Mentor Connection, just introduce yourself on the Tutor/Mentor Blog, or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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