Tuesday, July 15, 2014

The Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics

EDITOR'S NOTE: Each week, we'll feature intergenerational program ideas that were tried and successful. This new series is a tool to highlight various age-optimized programs and practices. The program descriptions are provided by representatives of the programs. Inclusion in this series does not imply Generations United's endorsement or recommendation, but rather encourages ideas to inspire other programs.

In part nine of our series, we feature the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics, a nonpartisan political institution housed at the University of Kansas. (Read parts onetwothreefourfivesixseven and eight.)

Launched in July 22, 2003, the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics recently started an intergenerational mentoring program with members of the Friends of the Dole Institute and the Dole Institute’s Student Advisory Board.

The Friends of the Dole Institute is an annual giving program made up mostly of retirees in the Lawrence, Kansas community. Members of the Student Advisory Board are undergraduate and graduate students at the University of Kansas interested in public service and civic engagement.

The Dole Institute Mentoring Program was developed with three goals in mind:1.    
  1. To foster deeper connections between the Friends of the Dole Institute and our Student Advisory Board,  
  2. To provide a forum for individuals of all ages to practice civil discourse by facilitating meaningful discussions on topics related to Dole Institute programs, and
  3. To develop students’ skills, values, and a sense of empowerment, leadership, and citizenship.
Mentors and mentees were matched based on their interests and met at three facilitated meetings throughout the semester, as well as on their own.

The activity among mentors and mentees took off quickly after our first facilitated meeting. Mentors and mentees did everything together from attending Dole Institute programs, to touring art museums, and even attending sporting events!

Got something cool you tried that was successful? Why not tweet your cool intergenerational ideas to  #cooligideas? You can also post them to our  IntergenerationalConnections Facebook Group. Youth Jumpstart Grantees can share ideas here. Or just text us through the Facebook Messenger app (friend me to join our Cool Intergenerational Ideas group discussion). We want to highlight innovative age-optimized programs and practices through our blog, social media and weekly e-newsletter!  Share the inspiration.

No comments: