Mentoring Program 


The CSU Champions Mentoring Program is the University’s “Cougar Commitment” to increase student enrollment, retention and ultimately graduation rates. Rise Scholars who demonstrate academic potential can apply to participate in a life-transforming mentor experience that supports college persistence, graduation and career readiness.

The CSU Champions Mentoring Program creates a platform where corporate philanthropy meets CSU Alumni and Rise Scholars to create a community that embraces experiential learning opportunities designed to support scholars in developing the necessary determination, knowledge, skills, abilities and networking competencies to achieve academic and career success. 

Champion (Mentor): Roles and Expectations

Champions will serve as a catalyst for the development of social capital, the foundation for strong networks of support and collaboration for Rise Scholars. Champions will serve as key boosters of scholars, supporting their personal and professional growth.

Each Champion/Scholar will be paired to maximize success and will be based on lived experiences, personal interests, professional goals of scholars and gender (if applicable). Mentors will be selected from some of Chicago’s most prestigious business and civic leaders. Wherever possible, the program will aim to identify alumni mentors. Mentors will share knowledge and experiences with scholars to support their development.

Active Champion Engagement will include:

  • Participation in experiential (quarterly) learning events facilitated by CSU and Champions Mentor Program
  • Active and ongoing engagement with your scholar (at least once a month) to ensure continuity throughout the program
  • Attend virtual Opening Meet and Greet with fellow Scholars and Champions
  • Attend end of semester closing session to review lessons learned and moving forward

As Champion you will also be expected to share your lived experiences, and serve as a positive role model.

Champion applications are now open and are accepted on a rolling basis. Champions will leverage years of experience, impart knowledge and wisdom to motivate and inspire the next generation of leaders. Champions who wish to become mentors will commit to a full academic year beginning June 2020 through May 2021.

Yes, I want to be a Champion!