Slicer Champions needs mentors

Slicer Champions needs mentors


The Slicer Champions program is currently looking for community members to serve as mentors to intermediate, middle and high school students. 

Slicer Champions is a program that pairs students in grades 5-12 who could use extra support and guidance with an adult from the community. Students are referred by teachers, counselors, or even bus drivers.

There are requirements to becoming a mentor. First there is a time commitment mentors have to accept, but the program and staff are flexible. Mentors are expected to come in once a week, and if one is not available that day, the team can reschedule mentors. The leaders of the program will make a plan to make it easier on everyone. Slicer Champions is through the La Porte Communtiy School Coporation, so those interested have to fill out an application with a background check. Applications are available on the La Porte Community School Corporation website. 

The Slicer Champion mentors visit with their mentee typically during Slicer Resource Time or lunch. The student can come in and do homework or just sit there and talk to his/her mentor about anything. The bonds formed become an important part of the students’ lives. 

“It is just nice to have someone they know, they can trust, who has their back, and is in their corner. Some kids just don’t have that in their life,”  Gina Jackson, Slicer Champions LPHS site coordinator, said. 

Some students don’t respond well to getting help from teachers and other staff at LPHS, so the mentor can become an extra layer of support. The mentor does not previously know who the student is, so there is no room for bias. 

“The relationship is different because this is someone from the outside that knows nothing about them. It is completely unbiased,” Jackson said. 

Many mentors are business professionals, which gives students opportunities to get advice whether it is career or more personal. Mentors often get more out of the program than they initially realize. 

“I would spend my entire week mentoring if I could. If young people feel like they have nowhere to go and no one to talk to, the spiral can rapidly get dark and hopeless. Convincing even one person that they will be okay, makes the whole journey worth it. Since the program is made up of volunteers, I think it really shows the kids that they are not a paycheck. They are wanted and cared about,”  Barbara Payne, mentor, said. 

Last year they had 70 students involved. Students in the program are finding the relationship with their mentors to incredibly impactful. 

“The Slicer Champions staff gives me support. I love my mentor Lisa so much. She is the Center Township trusts and is very busy, but she always makes the time to come see me. She even came and saw me yesterday after being awake all night because of a really big fire that was in La Porte. I know she cares a lot about me and is always there for me,” Courtney Hill, mentee, said. 

Slicer Champions is a program that changes lives, but it needs more mentors to operate on the level it has potential to. Apply today. 


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