Impact of Mentoring

Every SSP student is paired with a dedicated and passionate mentor who helps guide them through their four-year high school journey. The most important role of a mentor is to support and encourage their mentee, particularly as they struggle to overcome obstacles and solve problems. Research confirms that quality mentoring relationships have positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic, and professional situations.

Learn more about the impact of mentoring at

Become a Mentor

SSP Mentors have a sincere desire to be involved in the life and growth of a high school student. Since 1986, over 6,000 SSP mentors have served as role models, cheerleaders, advocates, and friends. Mentors report that they are positively changed by their experience with their mentee. 

Here’s how to get started!

  1. Complete the online application form.
  2. After you complete the application, SSP will contact you regarding next steps.
  3. Countdown to September when you will be invited to a special event to meet your mentee.

Your promise

  • Commit to meeting with your student one-on-one, 4-6 times a year.
  • Develop a supportive mentoring relationship that will last for 4 years.
  • Keep in touch with your student monthly via phone or email.
  • Join your peers and meet new people at mentors-only social and learning events (optional).

Our Promise to You

  • SSP supports mentors by providing free guides, webinars and workshops on the most effective ways to help and connect with your mentee.
  • SSP offers fun mentor-only networking events throughout the year.


Click here to be a Sponsor, Mentor, or both.

Mentor FAQs

What is an SSP mentor?

 An SSP mentor makes a positive difference in an SSP student’s life by just being there and letting the student know that he/she is not alone in facing life’s challenges.

What is the time commitment in being an SSP mentor?

Mentors are partnered with their mentees during their four years of high school. Prior to meeting your mentee, you must consent to a criminal background check and participate in a short training webinar. In the fall, you will meet your mentee at an SSP hosted event. After this initial introduction, you are required to meet with your student at least 4-6 times per year and maintain contact via phone or email monthly.

Is there a curriculum for the program?

 No. SSP’s mentoring component is student-centered, meaning your relationship is focused on the needs and interests of your mentee. SSP provides mentors with helpful resources (e.g. guides, workshops, tip sheets, mentor best-practices, etc.) on various topic related to good mentoring practices. Please go to our Mentor Resource Center to find various free help resources to being a great mentor.

Do I have to financially sponsor the student I mentor?

 No, however many mentors also make an annual financial contribution towards their student’s tuition. This is optional.

How long is the mentoring commitment?

 SSP Mentors commit to a student for his/her 4 years of high school. This ensures consistency for the student during a formative time in life.

What if I move away or are unable to mentor for 4 years?

 We understand that things happen in life. Contact or an SSP staff member to communicate your reservations.

What are some activities that mentors can do with their mentees?

 SSP organizes monthly fun events for mentors and mentees. Additionally, SSP recommends free or low cost events that mentors and mentees may enjoy. Many SSP mentor/mentee pairs enjoy checking out a sports game, trying a new cuisine, or even just taking a walk in the park.

How does SSP match mentors and mentees?

 We practice same-gender matching, and we make every effort to pair mentors from the same organization with students at the same SSP partner school. Success of a pairing in our program is dependent upon the mentor’s and mentee’s intent on having a successful relationship.

How does SSP support its mentors?

 Check out SSP’s Mentor Resource Center, and keep on the lookout for our Mentor Learning Series and more information about supporting your student at different points in his/her high school career.

Mentor Resource Center

Welcome to SSP’s Mentor Resource Center. The Mentor Resource Center provides free guides and links to external mentoring information to support you in your role as a mentor.


Activity Ideas

The following links and guides offer great ideas on events to connect well and frequent with your mentee.


The Benefits of Mentoring – Research confirms that high quality mentoring relationships have powerful positive effects on young people in a variety of personal, academic and professional situations. To learn more about the benefits of mentoring, check out the following research and information.

Training and Events

Click here to sign up for upcoming SSP mentor trainings and events.


Did you know:

  • Earning a college degree is “the most powerful instrument of economic mobility for low-income Americans (NY Times).
  • Only 1 in 10 people from low-income families will have a college degree by age 25. (Russell Sage Foundation).
  • The share of jobs that require a post-secondary education has doubled over the last 40 years (Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce).

Given the demand of the workplace for post- secondary education and training, SSP now offers a College and Career Program supplementary to each high school program. We believe it is never too early to begin preparing for college and a career.

SSP’s College and Career Program offers preparatory resources and tools to help SSP students to prepare for college and/or skills based career programs.


Freshman Roadmap 

There are critical milestones students should strive to achieve each class year. The SSP roadmap is a ‘planning toolkit’ and a ‘checklist for success’ for high school freshmen that helps them to address and overcome challenges they may face.

SSP’s Roadmap outlines how to write a  S.M.A.R.T. goal to help find solutions to challenges. S.M.A.R.T. goals are goals that are (S) Specific, (M) Measurable, (A) Attainable and (R) Relevant in my life at this moment and (T) Time-bound.

Click here to get started on your personalized Roadmap.


Sophomore Soft Skills Training Guide

Sophomore year is the best time to expose students to various career pathways and professional environments. SSP sophomores will receive soft skills training, which includes learning the tools and techniques to make a good first impression in any professional or academic environment. SSP sophomores will be able to put their soft skills into practice in a professional environment at SSP job shadow days and/or career days.
Click here to view the Soft Skills Training Guide.



All sophomores and juniors to take the PSAT/NMSQT and PSAT10 practice tests. Highlighted below are suggested resources:


Junior year is a key year to get ready for college with SAT prep, taking the SAT, and visiting colleges and college fairs.

SAT Prep 

SSP offers free SAT prep courses to all SSP juniors during their winter/spring semester.

Students receive:

  • SAT instruction on a weekly basis for approximately three months from the Ivy Key’s skillful instructors.
  • Individualized support designed to meet student’s test needs and result in improved overall SAT scores.
  • Three mock tests and receive in-depth analyses of results.
  • A two-hour college admissions consulting class at the end of the course.

SAT Prep Free Online Resources 

Recommended Books 

Official SAT Study Guide (2016 Edition)

Vendor: Amazon

Cost: $17.98

New SAT (28th Edition)

Vendor: Barnes and Noble

Cost: $11.25


College Best Fit and Application Process

SSP offers one-on-one college application counseling and “best fit” analysis workshops. The workshop will cover key components of the college application process such as developing a “best fit” college list, developing a strong college essay, and completing college and financial aid applications (FAFSA).

Helpful Resources 

College Applications

  • SUNY (The State University of New York) consist of 64 college campuses that offer over a thousand majors to study. The SUNY Application is accepted by 52 of the 64 State University of New York colleges. The other schools have a campus application form.
  • CUNY (The City University of New York) has 24 colleges and graduate schools located in New York City. The CUNY Application is accepted by all of the colleges within the City University of New York. The deadline is Feb 1st. Students may select up to six colleges on the application.


College Planning Resources

College Fairs

  • The Latino College Expo
    New York University
    Kimmel Student Center
    60 Washington Square South
    New York, NY 10012
    Fair Date: 2017 TBD
  • New York National College Fair
    Jacob K. Javits Convention Center of New York
    Hall 1C
    655 West 34th Street
    New York, NY 10001-1188
    Fair Date: 2017 TBD
  • Southern Westchester College Fair
    Westchester Putnam College Conference Committee
    Westchester County Center
    White Plains, NY 10606
    Fair Date: Monday, April 25, 2016 (6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.)
  • Northern Westchester College Fair
    Westchester Putnam College Conference Committee
    Fox Lane High School
    Bedford, NY
    Fair Date: Tuesday, April 26, 2016 (6:00 p.m. to 9:15 p.m.)



College Scholarships


  • Enrichment Opportunities Sheet – A guide to summer employment and internships.
  • Year Up New York is a one-year, intensive training program that provides low-income young adults, ages 18-24, with a combination of hands-on skill development, college credits, and corporate internships. To learn more, click here.