What’s All the Buzz About?

August 15, 2012

Registration for the 2012 Minnesota Mentoring Conference is open and people are signing up every day, taking advantage of the early bird discount available until Sept. 14.   We are hearing lots of buzz about this year’s collective impact theme, our lineup of dynamic national keynote speakers and special guests, and our incredible selection of workshops led by skilled presenters.  In addition, we have added bonus workshops in the morning, a luncheon at the North Star Ballroom, and a live streaming option this year.

I asked MPM’s Program Services Council members to share with our readers why they are excited about this year’s conference.  Here are their responses!

I am excited for this year’s conference because I have quoted the research of Dr. David Dubois and am looking forward to “sitting at the feet” of the master to hear about what he is working on today!  Also, Karen Pittman has been there and back in the world of mentoring and she tells it all in very real and also very qualitative ways.  Beth Becker, Urban Ventures

Working in a larger organization, it is always nice to connect with other mentoring programs at Mentoring Partnership of MN’s annual conference. The people we meet are great and the information we obtain is always timely and informative.  Barnelia-La’Vonne Clarke, Mentor Coordinator, Hennepin County DOCCR

I’m excited to attend Top Trends for High Impact Volunteer Engagement. I am always interested to hear about new ways to keep volunteers engaged. Volunteers are a strong resource for us. I am an advocate for a strategic volunteer engagement track. MAVA has done a lot to support volunteers in our state.  Margie Edberg, Executive Director, Kinship of Greater Minneapolis, a program of the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches

I think my favorite part of the conference is the networking- reconnecting with familiar faces and meeting new awesome people!  Maria Kustritz, Volunteer Manager, Bolder Options

I’m excited for two of the bonus sessions [offered early, 7:30-8:15am] and will have to decide between the two when I register!  Ending the Match – This is such an important topic. If this isn’t done correctly it can erase all the positive outcomes of the relationship.”  Adding Online Content to Enhance Mentor Training – Studies show that providing mentor training throughout the match increases the positive outcomes of the relationship and also increases the mentor’s satisfaction with the match but the challenge is finding a time to offer trainings that work with all mentor’s schedules…which is almost impossible. Providing on-line trainings is a great way to allow mentors to participate in training on their own schedules.— Ann Matvick, Program Director for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota 

I am very excited to attend the workshop on Maximizing Impact by Engaging Survival Based Youth. Our mentoring programs serves youth who have been involved in the juvenile justice system, many of who engage in survival behaviors. I am looking forward to learning tools to pass on to our mentors to improve their effectiveness in assisting their mentees.  –Rebecca Keyes, Youth Development Director, YMCA Emma B. Howe Northeast

There are so many great workshops, I’m having a hard time deciding which sessions to attend!  I’m particularly excited about Collective Impact in Action: Mentoring as part of the Mix and Karen Pittman’s keynote address.  As Northfield develops collective action strategies, it’s important to discover how mentoring can be involved. –Linda Oto, Youth Development Coordinator, Northfield Connected Kids

Look for these and other Program Services Council members at the conference on October 15!  They will be leading early morning workshops, serving as workshop monitors, and helping out in many other ways.  (They will also be judging the Facebook Recruitment Idea Contest!)