Mentoring Programs – Success through Covington Partners

Mentoring Programs – Success through Covington Partners
Donna Haggard, RN, guest columnist

Mentoring programs are becoming more and more popular in all types of organizations. Because these programs can be specialized to each specific type of organization, they are a critical part of the mentee’s success. The younger the mentee, the more powerful these programs become in shaping lives in a positive, productive manner. In addition, the relationships made through mentoring programs can often be long-lasting and beneficial for both the mentor and mentee. 

Typically speaking, mentoring programs for adults are geared more toward specific life skills, such as job success, or how to manage finances. Mentoring programs for the youth are important because they teach the mentee skills they can carry with them throughout their entire lives. Not only do they teach these skills for later in life, they also assist young people to be successful in school, so they have a better chance of becoming well rounded, successful adults.

It is well documented mentoring programs can accomplish things such as increase high school graduation rates, increase college enrollment, decrease the likelihood of drug and alcohol abuse, and increase self-esteem and confidence. Mentoring programs also enhance better academic performance, better school attendance, better attitudes, and reduce delinquent behavior ( 

All of this sounds too good to be true and unfortunately, it can be. Mentoring programs often do not reap the quality of benefits we all hope for. These programs can start out strong and end up fizzling before they become successful. This can happen for various reasons, such as an incompatible match between mentor and mentee or unclear expectations between the two ( This is a trap no mentoring program wants to fall into.

The best way to thwart an unsuccessful mentoring program is through program organization. It is crucial the program have a good training platform and support for mentors, adequate resource material, include mentors who are dedicated to carry through, and have a precise process for matching mentor to mentee (DuBois, 2021). Ultimately, find a process that works and stick with it. 

Studies also show that mentoring programs are more effective when there are long lasting relationships with the students opposed to just a year (

Pairing a mentor and mentee should be done with the expectation that the mentor will build a relationship over several years with the mentee and more than likely go above and beyond to be accessible to them. Students who participate in mentoring programs in childhood or adolescence along with case management also are more likely to seek higher education and have fewer arrests often than those without a mentoring program (DuBois, 2021). 

The mentoring program through Covington Partners is very successful. Students within seven different schools benefit from the incredible outpouring of community assistance found within the Covington area (Covington Partners, (n.d.). This program offers many different avenues for mentoring which allows for individuals to volunteer when it is more convenient for them. This is an important aspect of this program because without available mentors, there would be no program at all.

The mentoring programs include the Lunch Buddy program which matches mentors with 3rd to 5th grade students. The mentor meets with the students for 30 minutes each week during the student’s lunch period. School- and Community-based mentoring is a program for 6th to 12th grade students. The mentor meets with the students either during the school day or during evening hours. The After School Buddy program is great for mentors who work throughout the day. It gives them the flexibility to meet with the student after work and spend 30 to 60 minutes creating relationships and attending activities along with the students. There is also a Remote-based program where the student and mentor meet virtually for 30 minutes. The One to One Reading or Math Coach program (through a partnership with the Northern Kentucky Education Council) allows mentors to work with students from 1st to 3rd grade on reading and math skills following a six-hour training session. Finally, the Work-based program allows students to explore careers with an adult professional. The student and mentor meet once a month to enhance the student’s knowledge about their career field of choice (Covington Partners, (n.d.).  

The programs offered through Covington Partners have been well developed and their moto, “Mentor One Student, Change Two Lives” speaks for itself. Unfortunately, only 23% of Covington’s school aged population report having a positive, adult role model which makes this program even more essential (Covington Partners, n.d.). The students here have a brighter future because of their hard work and dedication.

The work Covington Partners is doing is based around their belief the students of Covington have potential for greatness, and their mentoring program is only one of the ways they make a difference in the community. How much better would the world be if it had a program like this in every community? Covington Partners should be known throughout the Northern Kentucky, Greater Cincinnati area and far beyond for the immense hard work and dedication they have. For now, however, the city of Covington will certainly be reaping the benefits of this heartwarming program for generations to come.


DuBois, D. L. (2021). Mentoring Programs for Youth: A Promising Intervention for Delinquency Prevention. National Institute of Justice, 283. Retrieved on February 9, 2023 from:
Covington Partners. (n. d.). Your Partner in Mentoring. Retrieved on February 9, 2023 from: (n.d.). Benefits of Mentoring Young People. Retrieved on February 9, 2023from: (n.d.). Challenges and Lessons Learned from Mentoring. Retrieved on February 9, 2023 from:

« Back to News