A winning mentorship between Algoma District School Board and Algoma University students
Sci-FY (Science & Reading for Youth), is a peer-to-peer mentoring program, designed to bring university and elementary school students together in a fun, interactive and educational setting. During a 9-week program, Algoma University student volunteers worked as mentors, one-on-one and in groups with Grade 5 and 6 students at Northern Heights Public School. Each week they engaged in a literacy and/or numeracy activity, as well as an interactive, healthy living and science-based curriculum.
Northern Heights Principal Marg Dodds (pictured left with Algoma U's Cynthia Burmaster) spoke about the success of the program and how all the students involved this year want to be part of the program again next year. Ashton is a Grade 5 student at Northern Heights. He shared his thoughts on the program. “It was a great experience for socializing and talking with the mentors from the university and for them to speak to us about the countries they came from. One student was from Nigeria and one was from Korea.”
Savannah is in Grade 6, and she and Ashton shared samples of their work from the program. Savannah shared her thoughts. “My favorite day was the gala. This was an evening where everyone got to meet everyone else and to do presentations so that our parents and some other people got to see what we had been working on for 9 weeks.”
Algoma University student Cynthia Burmaster and Sci-FY Lead Mentor shared, “Our post-secondary students had the opportunity to explore aspects of science and healthy living that intrigued them and practice their literacy and numeracy skills. With the success we had this year, I am sure this program will expand in the future and I am thrilled to have been a part of the designing process.”
Melissa Kargiannakis, an ADSB graduate, was the Sci-FY Project Founder. "After thinking about this program for seven years and finally seeing it come to life, all I can say is, this is just the beginning. Many thanks to Northern Heights Principal Marg Dodds, teachers Natasha Cole and Kyle Thaibeault and Director Lucia Reece of the Algoma District School Board; Brent Krmpotich & Dr. Myers of Algoma University, Sci-FY Lead Mentor Cynthia Burmaster, Science Curriculum Instructor Heather Douglas & all of the students & mentors for a successful first year."
The program is a partnership between Sci-FY, Algoma University, Algoma District School Board and S.E.E.D.S. (Supporting Education, Empowerment and Development through Science).