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Become a Mentor

Matching the cadets with a caring, responsible volunteer mentor is the most critical component of the Volunteer ChalleNGe Academy experience.

Upon completion of the 5-month Residential Phase, graduates return to their home communities and enter the 12-month Post Residential Phase.  During this year, TNVCA case managers and specially trained community mentors assist cadets to put their goals into action.  

A mentor is someone who is a friend, role model and caring support person.  A mentor should be able to invest in the life of a TNVCA cadet, and provide personal, educational and career guidance after graduation.  Some examples include:  Family friends, neighbors, coaches, teachers, law enforcement or military personnel, church members and community leaders.  


Who can be a Mentor?

Must not be a parent, step-parent or guardian

Must be the same sex as cadet

Must be at least 21 years old

Should live within commuting distance of cadet

Must pass a Department of Justice background check  


What is a Mentor?

A volunteer mentor is a person or friend who helps TNVCA in the process of developing these young men and women through building trust and being an effective role model throughout this process. An effective volunteer mentor understands that his or her role is to be a good listener, dependable, engaged, authentic, and aware of the needs of his or her mentee.  


What is the Process?

  1. Complete a Mentor Application
  2. Complete and Pass a Criminal Background Check
  3. Attend the required mentor training
  4. Be matched with a selected Cadet