The IMANI Academic Mentorship Program is dedicated to black youth in the East Scarborough community. The focus of this program is to connect black youth to opportunities which allow them to explore post-secondary education (university, college, other).
Black youth have and continue to face systemic anti-Black racism in the public education system. The IMANI Academic Mentorship Program engages with this systemic injustice by engaging UTSC students who reflect the community we aim to serve. UTSC students take on mentorship roles in six East Scarborough elementary and high schools by forging relationships and supporting youth in grades 7 – 12 with their academic studies and personal journeys.
From early October to the end of March, our UTSC IMANI Mentors meet with the youth at their assigned school each week. On a weekly basis, our curriculum brings two key processes to life:
- Homework/Mentoring: this is when our mentors sit down with one or two mentees to support their homework and facilitate meaningful discussions that support our youth at three levels: social/emotional, cognitive, and identity
- Programming: we bring the larger group (approx. 20) together and have our student leaders guide the youth through an Afro-centric curriculum (workshop format) focused on Black Joy, racial & social justice, arts, and healing
The IMANI Academic Mentorship Program has a community of support through its funders, community leaders, UofT mentors, parents, youth, Friends of IMANI (black professionals supporting the program), and our Advisory Committee.