College can be a time of exploring gender identity, gender expression, and sexuality. However, not all college students have adult mentors they can turn to for guidance and support.
By fostering mentoring relationships between students and out LGBTQ+ faculty and staff, Rainbow Buddies can help students develop positive identities.
About Rainbow Buddies
Rainbow Buddies is a mentorship program that pairs out LGBTQ+ faculty and staff mentors with student mentees. Through these trusting one-on-one relationships, mentors and mentees can discuss issues related to gender and sexuality in a safe and supportive environment.
The Rainbow Resource Center will pair mentors and mentees based on relevant interests and identities, and based on what students ask for in a mentor.
Mentors and mentees will be paired until the end of the academic year. They can arrange times to meet and talk, and also attend events hosted by the Rainbow Resource Center.
Benefits for Mentees
Through Rainbow Buddies, you will have someone that you can rely on for support and guidance with all things gender and sexuality. You can ask questions and receive advice in a safe, private environment, and learn what can take others years to discover.
Benefits for Mentors
As an adult in the LGBTQ+ community, you can make a big difference in students’ lives– especially those who have never had an LGBTQ+ mentor. As a mentor, you can help students challenge the negative messages and stereotypes they may have internalized about the LGBTQ+ community.
Rainbow Buddies FAQ
Q: Who are the mentors?
A: Mentors are SCU faculty and staff who identify openly as members of the LGBTQ+ community, and wish to help students develop positive and healthy identities regarding gender and sexuality.
Q: Who are the mentees?
A: All students seeking mentorship regarding gender and/or sexuality are welcome to participate.
Q: How are mentors and mentees paired?
A: Mentors and mentees are paired based on similarity in identities and interests. When possible, we also try to accommodate any specific requests a mentee might have.
Q: What do mentors and mentees do together?
A: Mentors and mentees discuss topics that are of interest to the mentee. Discussions could revolve around coming out, dating, self-acceptance, and multiple identities. Mentees might also be interested in academic or professional issues related to LGBTQ+ identities.
In addition to one-on-one discussions, mentors and mentees can feel free to go on small outings, or attend on-campus events together.
Q: Where do mentors and mentees meet?
A: Mentors and mentees can meet for lunch or coffee, on campus or nearby. It’s important to pick a place where the mentee feels safe to talk about LGBTQ+ topics.
Q: What if I want a different mentor?
A: If the match isn’t working out, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Interested in joining Rainbow Buddies?
Here’s a link to the Mentor Application.
Here’s a link to the Mentee Application.