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Volunteer with Us

 
Volunteers play a critically important role at Big Picture Philadelphia. They serve as mentors, host student interns at their place of business, provide feedback on mock interviews and student presentations, and support students with career growth. Big Picture students all over the world cite their mentors as one of the biggest supporters in their lives -- not just in school. There are several volunteer opportunities available depending on your level of commitment. Read on to learn more, and contact us at any time with questions!
 
 
 

Single-day opportunities

Mock Interviews: Volunteers are needed to participate in on-site mock interviews with entry-level students preparing for internships. Your support will help students perfect their interviewing techniques and practice answers to typical interview questions!
 
Exhibitions of Learning: Volunteers are needed at the end of each semester or trimester to participate in student exhibitions and demonstrations. Volunteers are asked to provide feedback to students to help develop skills in public speaking and critical thinking.
 

Deeper engagement

If you're ready to deepen your engagement, we would love to talk to you about becoming a  community mentor! Community mentors work with students twice per week during the course of their internship program, providing guidance and support at their place of business to help students meet their individualized learning goals. Mentors receive ample support and training from Big Picture Philadelphia staff to ensure a successful internship experience. Please review our Frequently Asked Questions below to learn more about this important opportunity, and check out the video below to see how mentorship impacts our students.
 
Big Picture Philadelphia is committed to equipping and empowering our students to contribute to society in real ways, but we couldn't do that without the contributions of our community mentors.
 
If you are interested in learning more about either of these opportunities, please get in touch

What is mentorship? Mentors cultivate a relationship with a young person who shares their interests. Mentors meet regularly with their student-intern (and their advisor), attend exhibitions, co-develop projects, and share resources and other skills.

Who can and should mentor a student-intern? Mentors are professionals who want to share their expertise and joy for their line of work.

When do mentors host student-interns? Internships at BPP are scheduled during the school day because they are an essential part of the student’s learning experience. Students attend their internships Tuesdays and Thursdays. In general, an internship lasts at least three months, although some internships may last until the end of the school year and beyond.

Why become a mentor? Mentors from across the Big Picture Learning network express profound personal and professional fulfillment through their work with interns, but the potential for mentorship goes further. Mentors have an opportunity to grow their own employee base by training tomorrow’s workforce, and to create new consumers by offering youth exposure to new experiences and industries. So although mentoring a student-intern from BPP allows adults like you to make a positive impact on the life of a youth, mentorship also lays a foundation for growth in your organization.

How does BPP support mentors? Each student-intern has an advisor (a certified classroom teacher) who serves as an academic and social-emotional guide throughout the student’s tenure at BPP. The advisor is the mentor’s “point person,” too, and will contact the mentor every internship day and visit every other week.  Advisors support mentors in understanding their student-intern’s learning style, in developing project work, and in student-intern accountability. Advisors are also troubleshooters, and can help brainstorm solutions to any problem that arises, including how to challenge and engage an intern on a daily basis.

A note on safety. Students are insured through the school. We carry accident and liability insurance, and require that mentors take potential interns on a walkthrough of the worksite at the outset of an internship. We also arrange for all mentors to get a Childline clearance and a state background check.