Mentoring World Loses An Advocate

The past week or so has seen the passing of several important iconoclasts in our world, including Steve Jobs, who was relentless in his vision for Apple, and Al Davis, a passionate coach of the Oakland Raiders. Added to that list is a man who greatly influenced the field of youth development and mentoring, Peter Benson of the Search Institute.

When I first encountered the 40 Developmental Assets (now also offered as the 41 Developmental Assets, with one more asset related to cultural competency added by Project Cornerstone in San Jose), I was amazed at how right and simple the framework seemed to be. It made perfect sense and applied to our mentoring program, and the young people we work with, effortlessly. Since then, I have used this model in countless trainings for mentors, for program staff, and for funders. By giving mentors a concrete, achievable outcome, they can appropriately channel their desire to help in ways that actually help youth.

For more wonderful tributes to Dr. Benson, please read the Mentoring Partnership of Minnesota's blog. They were fortunate to work closely with the Search Institute and with Dr. Benson himself.

Thank you, Dr. Benson, for your relentless pursuit of helping young people achieve.


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