Aboriginal eMentoring BC is an innovative online mentoring program that supports Aboriginal youth have access to post-secondary education and a career in the health field. The vision for eMentoring emerged from conversations between Dr. Sandra Jarvis-Selinger and Mr. James Andrew at the University of British Columbia. As the Aboriginal Student Initiatives Coordinator in the Faculty of Medicine, Mr. Andrew often spoke with Aboriginal students across British Columbia about UBC’s mission to improve Aboriginal representation in medical school and other health science programs. He discovered that a number of Aboriginal students were interested in health science careers, but were not doing well in school or had dropped out.
In 2009, Dr. Jarvis-Selinger and an academic research team at UBC received a four-year grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to set Aboriginal eMentoring BC in motion. Designed as a community-university partnership, eMentoring has forged partnerships with Aboriginal communities, school districts and organizations from across the province to support and engage Aboriginal youth.
eMentoring combines the established need to support the academic success of Aboriginal students with strong evidence of online mentoring’s positive impact on educational outcomes. In 2012, eMentoring received two awards from Ashoka Changemakers as a top entry for post-secondary education in the Changemakers Initiative: Inspiring Approaches to First Nations, Métis and Inuit Learning competition.
About the Logo
The eMentoring logo was drawn by a student in the eMentoring program with many elements representative of Aboriginal culture. The logo is about traditional community and each of the elements represents a different idea. The cupped hands represent the unity that comes with community; tobacco represents tradition and traditional methods; elder berries represent traditional medicine; medicine wheel represents health and the eagle represents heritage and culture.