Category: Humans

xoNecole: 4 Women on How Mentorship Changed Their Lives.

Mentorship matters. In The Impact of Being a Mentor, by Brittney Oliver founder of Lemons to Lemonade, four women discussed how mentorship has influenced their lives. Each answered four questions:

  1. How is mentorship important to you?
  2. When and why did you first become a mentor?
  3. What has been the biggest reward of mentoring?
  4. How has mentoring changed your life?

On how mentoring changes lives, below are the responses.

Manessa Lormejuste

Mentoring has changed my life as I have been able to connect with many young women who would not have known about a career such as mine. Mentoring has also allowed me to be more confident in myself and stick true to my beliefs. As I continue to pour into my mentees based on my own experiences, I realize that the life I have chosen to pursue was not a mistake, but what I was destined to do.

Manessa Lormejuste, Cosmetic Chemist at L’Oreal USA
Nekasha Pratt

I am a better person and leader because I’m a mentor. My listening and communication skills have improved, and my patience and empathy have increased. I enjoy helping others achieve their goals, so I also have an increased sense of personal pride from seeing a person I mentored succeed.

Nekasha Pratt, Director of Marketing, Tennessee Department of Tourist Development
Carjie Scott

Mentoring has made me a better person, and I think it has made others better. It has increased my relationships with others and allowed me the chance to encourage others to do their very best. It makes me live a purpose-driven life because I know that people are looking up to me. I understand that I can’t give the shirt off my back if I don’t have a shirt on. So, it makes me take care of myself, so I can care for others.

Carjie Scott, Higher Education Administrator
Crystle Johnson

Mentoring has given me a sense of purpose and accomplishment. We don’t have to fly to the moon or cure cancer to be extraordinary. Through empowering, supporting, and sharing with those who need it — we are extraordinary.

Crystle Johnson, Sr. Consultant, Inclusion, Diversity & CSR at Electronic Arts

Read the full article, courtesy of xoNecole, here.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie, instagram @carjiescott, and facebook at Dr. Carjie Scott.

Stacey Abrams warns voter suppression threatens our democracy.

by Carjamin Scott on March 25, 2019, at 10:05 p.m. CST

I had the pleasure of attending a lecture featuring politician, author, and attorney Stacey Abrams. Abrams is best known for a complicated loss to the Governor’s race in Georgia where incumbent, Brian Kemp was accused of manipulating the votes since he served as Secretary of State during the race with Abrams. The Secretary of State position gave him oversight of the election of which he was a candidate.

Abrams, began the lecture saying, “I am here because I am not the Governor of Georgia.” Unlike most candidates, Abrams was contracted to write a book about the campaign while campaigning. Her book, ‘Lead from the Outside’ is a memoir on how to get power, access to resources, and overcome failure.

Abrams said, “People like us, (outsiders) are afraid of opportunity because we don’t want to mess it up. When we mess up, we fear that there is no recovery because we are so limited in many spaces. Oftentimes we are unwillingly representing an entire culture and community which brings upon unwanted pressure.”

When Abrams told her family and friends that she wanted to run for the Governor seat she faced much criticism. “I can’t invest in you because I don’t believe in you enough,” some alluded. “You’re qualified Stacey, but do you realize that you are a woman and you are black?” others said to her.

Abrams still ran and although her loss was controversial, she said, “My moment of darkness wasn’t for me. My book, ‘Lead from the Outside’ is important because that’s where a lot of folks are.”

As mentioned during the lecture and reported by the New York Times, Abrams received 25% of votes from whites and 38% of votes from republicans. Additionally, she was able to triple Latino voter turnout and increase youth and black voter turnout. She got more votes than any other democrat seeking the Governor position. “On Election Day, we knew we had done something unprecedented. Then, as the final counts were tallied scenario Z happened. There was a concern about the election; so, I had the every vote should count speech.”

At that moment, before the final results were tallied, Abrams believed that it was her responsibility to rally voters, especially those who felt the system failed them and the republican voters who believed in her enough to vote against their own party.

Then, Brian Kemp was announced as governor. She admitted that she was angry and sometimes still is. “Revenge is cathartic, I had to make sure this doesn’t happen again. I had to work towards changing the infrastructure that allowed this to happen.” Abrams continued. “You fix problems, you don’t wallow in them.”

Now, Abrams is working to change the voting system and has launched Fair Fight Action. Her organization works to end the systematic repression of voter access and to bring awareness to the public on necessary election reform.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie.

Great mentors don’t ‘give fish,’ they create relationships: Dr. Noble discusses mentorship.

by Carjamin Scott on March 9, 2019, at 4:05 a.m. CST

Many authors are credited for the old proverb, “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.” This simple phrase describes the importance of an experienced fisherman sharing his wisdom with a man who wants to catch a fish.

If the experienced fisherman simply gives his fish to the man who is fishing, he is not serving his neighbor at the fishing dock. The neighbor may be grateful for the fish given to him; however, every time he takes the fish from the fisherman he becomes more dependent on the fisherman and less likely to learn to fish on his own.

Great mentors do not ‘give fish,’ they create relationships. I had a conversation with Dr. Rosevelt Noble, a married father with many hats and a mentor to a number of students.

When asked to describe mentorship, he said, “Mentorship is providing advice, guidance, counsel, and support to help people through the development process. The development process can include becoming a man, becoming a CEO, or parenting a son.”

He believes that mentors can serve in different purposes. “They can be cheerleaders, fact checkers, or critics. What limits people is their narrow perception of what mentorship looks like.”

I asked Dr. Noble to share who his mentor is. “My closest mentor is a 70-year-old white female, I have been in contact with her for over 20 years. She was one of my favorite professors in college. We talk weekly about pressing issues.” Dr. Noble, a black man from a neighborhood outside of Chicago, and his mentor grew up in extreme poverty.

He said, “Although you may not be able to tell from appearances, our backgrounds lined up and she was just a good person.” I asked Dr. Noble, “How would you suggest that students find good mentors?” He responded, “You have to put yourself in places and in positions to be developed.” He continued. “You have to develop a relationship with the person and often times you have to ask them to be your mentor.”

I said to Dr. Noble, “What about the students who do not put themselves in a position to be developed?” I continued. “There are many students who need mentorship but are not aware of how to ask for it.” He replied, “There was a time when I made myself someone’s mentor.”

He shared the story of a male student who was basically written off by a ton of people. Dr. Noble was able to build a rapport with the student. He quickly learned that the student was dealing with depression. His mom had even lost contact with her son.

While cultivating a relationship with the student Dr. Noble was able to build a relationship with his mom. In conversations, they both began calling him, “Dr. Rosie.” Soon, he had influence over the student and was able to become a mentor to him. The student was able to overcome his situation and get back on the right track.

From my conversation with Dr. Noble, I learned a number of lessons.

  1. Dig deep, below the surface, when choosing a mentor.
  2. If someone chooses you to be their mentor, be prepared to develop others instead of just giving to others.
  3. Mentors have mentors too. In fact, you should have multiple mentors and each should serve a different purpose.
  4. If you have found a potential mentor, don’t be afraid to ask the person to be your mentor.
  5. If you want to be someone’s mentor that hasn’t asked for your help, that’s okay. When you have something to offer, you can and should make a difference in a person’s life.

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Carjamin Scott can be reached at carjamin.scott@gmail.com and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie.