Reynolds Mentoring Programs


Reynolds is committed to the success of our students.  To support this commitment, the college is starting a new mentoring program called WISE:  Women in Search of Excellence.  Although any Reynolds student can apply to WISE, many of the topics and activities will be about the issues facing first-generation women college students. 

WISE programs are not new to the Virginia Community College system.  There are also programs at Southside Virginia Community College and NOVA’s Manassas campus.

WISE Mission

The mission of WISE is to empower women through professional and academic enrichment while improving self-esteem and self-advocacy.

WISE Students

  • Set academic, personal and career goals.
  • Learn how to make informed decisions.
  • Identify resources and pathways to successfully achieve goals.
  • Cultivate strong relationships with women in academia.
  • Develop leadership and self-improvement skills with support from your mentors.

How does it work?

There are three parts to the process:

  • Application & matching
  • One-on-one meetings
  • Group meetings

Application and matching:  Students complete an application and an interview.   There are a limited number of spaces available and students who are accepted into the program but cannot join because of space limitations will be placed on a wait list.  Students will be matched with a staff or faculty member to form a mentor-mentee relationship.

One-on-one meetings:  The mentor (staff or faculty member) and mentee (student) will meet at least twice a semester for 30 minutes.  They will also have several brief check-ins throughout the semester to ensure that mentees are reaching their full potential and succeeding academically. 

Group meetings:  Students will also attend 5 workshops a semester on a range of topics such as first-generation college student resources, leadership development, communication skills, conflict management, resume building, interview skills, and more.  Some workshops will have guest speakers to talk about their careers and give students advice about succeeding in college and in the professional world of work.  Some workshops will have “open” topics – students will have forums to voice their opinions and concerns about events of the day. 

What is a mentoring relationship?

Some students have never been involved in a mentoring relationship.  Don’t worry!  There will be separate training sessions for mentors and mentees to understand the dynamics of a mentoring relationship.  This will occur prior to the start of the semester.   There will also be a kick-off event so all mentors and mentees can get to know one another. 

Mentors and mentees talk about a variety of topics of their choosing.  Some mentees want encouragement throughout the semester, others want reminders about due dates for papers and tests, some want to talk about the world of work after graduation, and some want to talk about the challenges they face as first-generation college students. 

You’ll also get to know the other mentees in the program and form friendships.  Being a part of WISE can lead to other opportunities such as getting involved with Student Senate, Student Ambassadors, and other clubs and organizations.


If you’re ready to apply, fill out this form.  Before doing so think about these two questions, which are on the interest form:  What do you want to gain or learn from being a member of WISE?  Why will WISE be a better organization with you in it?    

If you have questions, contact Kristine Dahm at


You are not your Age,

Nor the size of the clothes you wear.

You are not a weight,

Or the color of your hair.

You are not your name,

Or the dimples in your cheeks.

You are all the books you read,

And all the words you speak.

You are your croaky morning voice,

And the smiles you try to hide.

You are the sweetness in your laughter,

And every tear you’ve cried.

You’re the songs you sing so loudly,

When you know you’re all alone.

You’re the places that you’ve been to,

And the one that you call home.

You’re the things that you believe in,

And the people that you love.

You’re the photos in your bedroom,

And the future you dream of.

You’re made of so much beauty,

But it seems that you forgot.

When you decided that you were defined,

By all the things that you are NOT.

By Erin Hanson