The Laurel-Concord TeamMates Program was put in place
in the Fall of 2001 after three volunteers (Annette Junct, Bob Fritschen,
and Michael Nesbit) attended the required Trainer of Trainers all day
workshop last July in Norfolk. At that point, it became one of 43 TeamMates
programs across the state of Nebraska.
TeamMates was started by former Husker coach Tom Osborne and his wife
Nancy in 1991 as a way for student athletes to give back to the community.
It was so successful that the program went state-wide in 1998.
School board member, Jim Lipp, learned of the TeamMates
Program while attending a meeting in Lincoln. He returned to Laurel
inspired and shared the idea with Laurel-Concord High School Superintendent,
Dan Hoesing, who recognized program's potential to address some of the
needs of Laurel-Concord students. Annette Junct and Bob Fritschen were
recruited as coordinators and Dr. Michael Nesbit as the director.
The mission of the TeamMates mentoring program is to provide the
framework for adults to volunteer to serve as a positive role model
for a student who would benefit from having another caring adult in
Initially, fourteen adults were recruited as volunteers from the community.
The student mentees were selected by a teacher recommendation process.
The mentors and their student meet once a week at school for an hour,
engaging in a variety of activities.
Larry Havorka related that during his meeting times with his mentee
they might just talk, or he may help his charge with homework. He stated
that helping his mentee with math helps sharpen his own math skills.
Mentor, Cindy DeLong, conveyed, I go whenever I have time. We
usually just visit or play games. I ask how things are going.
Last week she just happened to go up to the school when the mentees
were meeting as a group. Delong expressed that the participants all
appreciate the program, and they all get along well together.
Dr. Nesbit said of the meeting, The group was electing officers
and making plans for some fund-raising in the future.They want to do
some fun things. They may even get T-shirts. Nesbit hopes the
program will be expanding next year. "Wouldnt it be great
for all students who want a mentor, to get a mentor?" he expressed.
Any adult interested in becoming a TeamMates mentor should contact one
of the coordinators or call the H.S. office to get more information
and an application form.
and John McCorkindale help to bring a fun experience
for the younger generation at this past summer's Ag Days.
from TeamMates and other groups helped
to install sod at the Laurel Care Center this past summer.
Fritschen makes a crucial point during a recent TeamMates training session