Through a partnership with the University of Washington, STUDIO brings UW student mentors to work with STUDIO youth during program time. These UW mentors support STUDIO youth in STEM learning.
In a hands-on learning activity, UW mentors might work as assistants for the youth in navigating a project or assignment. For example, during a photography unit, college mentors can serve models for photography or helpful references to adjust camera settings. If it’s a STEM based discussion, UW students can share their experiences and thoughts as STEM students. While youth work on projects or activities, UW mentors ask questions and engage the STEM thought process. UW mentors serve a valuable role in bridging the connection between STEM knowing and doing.
Participating in the STUDIO mentorship program gives UW students the tools to be effective STEM educators in the future. By signing up for the mentorships class, college students are given a valuable opportunity to practice leadership and mentorship skills.
UW students attend a weekly seminar where they learn about challenges surrounding educational equity in the STEM field. They learn about theory and practices to ensure that STUDIO is an inclusive, equitable, and effective learning space. Mentors can then apply this learning to Tuesday and Wednesday visits where they work alongside youth. In addition to mentoring, mentors also have the opportunity to design their own STEM curriculums. Mentors are challenged to create effective and culturally responsive activities that will aid STUDIO youth in learning STEM topics.