October Mentor 2.0 Match of the month

Cynthia’s Story:

My mentee is Maria, a Senior at South Valley Academy.  Maria was new to SVA her Junior year.  We were matched in early 2020.  We had the opportunity to meet at a social event, but unfortunately, Maria had to cancel at the last minute.  When the school year ended, mentors were asked to keep in contact with our mentees throughout the summer.  Since Maria and I had never met, I knew we had to think of a creative way to keep our communication going beyond the basic conversations.  I asked Maria if she wanted to either read a book or watch a show together.  Our original thought was to read a book, but since libraries were closed, that made it difficult.  Maria suggested we watch a Korean series (K-drama) together.  We watched an episode a day, then wrote a small review of each episode.  We were able to read each other’s reviews and compare our thoughts about the series.

We watched three K-drama series during the summer.  After Maria got settled with her online classes, we started watching another show.

It gave us the opportunity to learn about Korean culture, the language, but best of all, it was a great way to get to know each other. As time went on, we started adding things about our personal lives in the messages.   We’ve learned we have things in common such as our love for the outdoors, spending time with our family, and watching good romantic comedies.

Maria is a very intelligent young lady.  I have confidence that she’ll do great in college.

She has adapted very well with the changing world and seems to take everything in stride.  Her positive attitude has helped me move forward, as we both underwent the stress of Covid-19 changes.    It’s been a privilege to be her mentor.  I’m sure we’ll continue our relationship after she graduates.

Maria’s Story:

My Mentor is Cynthia. The first time that I talked to Cynthia, I was kind of scared not going to lie. I thought that we weren’t going to have as good communication as we do now. This was the first time that I ever did something like this. Then through the school year, we talk not as much as we do now. I would do my lessons, and she would respond back that it was about it. The first time that we were going to meet in person, I had a family problem and wasn’t able to make it. When summer came, she told me she wanted to do some kind of activity. We have two options: we read a book, or we just watch a show or movie. I suggested watching k dramas. A friend of mine recommended me a show on Netflix that was Korean. I told Cynthia, and she agreed with it. That’s when all our good relationship started. For every episode, we would do a summary about it, and then we would share our opinion about certain things that happened in the episode. After the fourth episode, we started interacting a lot more we would ask each other different things about our personal lives, and then our relationship grew bigger. I loved talking to her every day, and she just seemed like a really great person, and her personality and her tastes are similar to mine. During some of the episodes of the show, there were so many funny scenes that I would just laugh so much to the point that when I was writing the summary, I still couldn’t stop laughing. I learned a lot about Korean culture, and they’re different traditions ( I learned some words too). I personally liked the first show that we watched because it was all about Injustice that happens all over the world, not only in Korea, and even though we’ve been watching more and more shows, I feel like I’ll never forget the first one. Sometimes during summer, I would go camping, and I would send her pictures of my camping trips, and when she went on trips, she would send pictures of it. I think that this is what made us get closer. By the second k drama that we watched, we were really comfortable with each other. We wouldn’t only talk about the show, but we would also talk about the good and bad things that happen to us during the summer with all this pandemic. If she felt down, I would help her out, and if I needed help in anything, she would always tell me that if I needed someone to talk to, she was there for me. by the end of summer, we watched for k dramas, and they were all really good. At the beginning of the senior year, we started watching another show. If I couldn’t watch any episode during the day, she would understand me, and she would say that we would watch it later. At the beginning of the year, I doubted whether to apply to colleges outside of State. First of all, because I am scared to go out of State, I don’t want to leave my family. But Cynthia told me that I should just apply for different colleges, and then in the future, I will have different options on what I want to do because the future can change. I just feel like that was really helpful because I never thought about it that way. Thanks to her, I decided that I will apply to different colleges outside of the states, and if I change my mind last minute, I’ll just stay here, but as she said, at least I tried. I met her about two weeks ago virtually. She is a really nice person. I loved her personality; she’s just a person that you feel comfortable with. I thought it was going to be a different relationship speaking in person than through the platform, but meeting in person( well virtually) was even better. Definitely, she loves her family as much as I love mine. We have a lot of things that we both enjoy, and I’m glad I can share them with her. She is really helpful, and I know that if I need help with anything, I can ask her. I just feel really comfortable with her. She is someone that I can count on, and I hope that I will be able to count on her after I graduate.

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