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ALANA Students and Alumnae/i Mentoring

The ALANA Students and Alumnae/i Mentoring (ASAM) Program (formerly known as the SAAM Program) is a one-on-one mentoring program that is committed to fostering meaningful relationships between Simmons ALANA alumnae/i and students of color.

Letter of Acknowledgement

Dear Simmons Community,

On behalf of the Multicultural Center, we want to acknowledge the absence of the Simmons ALANA Student ALANA Mentoring (ASAM) in recent years, the contributing factors and the next steps!

At Simmons and many other institutions, the universal impact of COVID shifted the entire landscape of higher education, leaving vacancies, reduced staffs, pauses in programmatic efforts, and breakdown in communication. As we relaunch and renew the ASAM program, we want to be transparent with the community, alumnae/i, and all students, staff and faculty involved. We need their support to continue this program in elevation and development. 

History of ASAM

In the spring 2016, members of the Diversity Committee of the Alumnae/i Association (AA) and the African American Alumnae/i Association (AAAA) created the ASAM Program – an interactive mentoring program meant to help students of color along their path of academic and professional growth. Since its initial launch in Fall 2016, the program continued to grow and provide opportunities to students of color through the connections made with exceptional alumnae/i.  

Above all else, ASAM is a student-centered opportunity to engage and provide out of classroom opportunities for students to bridge the gap between college and professional life. Both the availability of active alumnae/i and the desired outcomes of students serve as the basis for the ASAM program.

In the Fall 2019, the ASAM Program was managed by the office of Organizational Culture, Inclusion and Equity. During this time the program was supported by an ASAM Coordinator and the level of committed mentees and mentors consistently ranged from 15-20. Between the  iterations of leadership transitions in OCIE and coupled with the pivot to a virtual experience lead to a ripple of communication gaps and an ultimately disconnected partnership with the AA and AAAA. 

As of Fall 2021, the ASAM Program is managed by the Multicultural Center to align with the mission of being student centered and commitment to the growth and healing of Simmons underrepresented and traditionally marginalized identities.

Onward and Upward

As the Multicultural Center moves forward in a collaborative partnership with the Alumnae/i Association and the African American Alumnae/i Association, we want to be transparent about what we are doing in terms of the revitalization of the ASAM program; and making sure that every voice, past and present are included in the conversation.

Next steps include, attending the AAAA and AAEB monthly meetings and identifying signature program partnership, offering mentorship to both undergraduate and graduate students, assessment, and forming a ASAM Committee to sustain the progression of the program. 

We are excited about being partners in progress! Please see opportunities to participate below and look out for additional opportunities and information.  

EriKa Monfort, Multicultural Center Director/ Assistant Dean of Student Experience, 
Malachi Robinson, Multicultural Center Assistant Director

Become a Mentee

If you will be a sophomore, Junior, Senior, or Graduate Student in the upcoming academic year and are interested in becoming a Mentee, we invite you to submit your application.

To be eligible to participate as a mentee, students will be required to:

  • A rising sophomore, junior, senior or graduate student
  • Identify as person of color.
  • Willing and able to dedicate time to a mentoring relationship
  • Complete the ASAM application and screening process
  • Participate in the ASAM Orientation

Become a Mentor

If you’re interested in becoming a mentor for the upcoming academic year, we invite you to submit your application:

We ask that mentors are:

  • A Simmons Alumnae/i (undergraduate or graduate) of 5+ years
  • Identify as person of color
  • Willing and able to dedicate time to a mentoring relationship

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis for both mentors and mentees.

Goals and Objectives

The overarching goal of the ASAM Program is to provide a structured one-to-one relationship between Simmons alumnae/i of color and students of color to address the needs of mentees and encourage them to realize their full academic, professional, and personal potential, while supporting them on their path to success.

To achieve this goal, the ASAM Program has the following objectives:

  1. Provide students with guidance in defining their personal, academic, and professional goals
  2. Increase opportunities for alumnae/i to engage with their alma mater by sharing their experiences, personal insights, and knowledge with current students
  3. Promote and expand professional networking opportunities for mentees of color
  4. Increase mentees’ confidence and leadership skills necessary to achieve their full potential
  5. Increase cultural connections for historically underserved communities within Simmons and academia