Our History

Mentors, Inc. may be the most recognized mentoring program in Washington, D.C. because it was the first, even before landmark research spearheaded a surge in other programs.  Mentors, Inc. has matched and supported over 5,000 students with over $700,000 in college scholarships to graduating seniors. 

Mentoring is an asset for every child's life!  Mentors, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that provides mentoring support to public and charter high school students in Washington DC and improves graduation rates and students’ outlook for the future.  We have provided mentors for students enrolled in Washington, D.C.’s public senior high schools since 1987.  The organization was founded by a parent and a principal – Shayne Schneider and Betty Brooks – who recognized the powerful untapped resource that the large pool of highly educated professionals in D.C. represented for students in the city’s public schools.  While the city’s professional community is among the most educated and affluent in the United States, its public schools serve many students who are severely limited in family, community and school resources, with little experience with higher education.  Mentors, Inc. has been the only citywide, one-on-one, open enrollment mentoring program serving high school aged youth, focused on the relationship itself.  More than merely tutors, our mentors are role models; they provide the guidance, support, knowledge, and love our young people need to become successful adults. 

Since the start, our goal has been to help our students graduate from high school and go on to college, to open up a lifetime of possibilities.  And we do this using the research-based best practices of MENTOR National Mentoring Partnership, which advocates for mentoring nation-wide.  Need more inspiration?  View the brief National Mentoring Partnership CEO's video-advocacy on the value of mentoring, or the 29-minute NBC's Education Nation: Exploring the Role of Mentoring panel discussion from October 2013.