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New Young House Resident Mentor Excited to Make a Positive Impact on Lyon Students

Lyon College welcomes a new addition to the Young House mentorship program this year, as Sarah Williams takes on the role of Resident Mentor. With a passion for student support and a desire to foster personal relationships, Williams is eager to contribute to the Lyon community in a meaningful way.

When Williams first learned about the position of Young House Resident Mentor, she was pleasantly surprised to discover that the program was open to both staff and faculty members. 

“Immediately following my surprise, I became excited about the potential opportunity to support students in meaningful ways, like academic success, personal development, emotional well-being, and career preparation,” said Williams.

Williams has long desired to make a positive impact on students' lives on campus, and she saw this mentorship program as the perfect avenue to establish personal connections with a wider range of students.

A Lyon College alumna herself, Williams graduated in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. During her time at Lyon, she experienced student life from both a residential and a commuter perspective. 

“I initially lived on campus my freshman and sophomore years, then became pregnant during the spring term of my sophomore year and had to move off campus to continue pursuing my degree,” said Williams. “Going to a rigorous institution like Lyon College as a single mom with a newborn baby was extremely difficult.”

However, Williams emphasizes that she would not have been able to complete her degree without the unwavering support from the Lyon College community. Faculty and staff members went above and beyond, providing invaluable assistance such as babysitting her daughter during classes and accommodating her need to bring her child to certain lectures. This support enabled Williams to persevere and succeed academically. Grateful for the guidance and encouragement she received, Williams is now excited to contribute to a new generation of Lyon students and give back to the community that supported her.

With 18 years of experience in educational fields, Williams brings a wealth of knowledge in assisting diverse groups of learners. 

“I have significant experience assisting diverse groups of learners with academic, social, and emotional concerns that often create barriers to learning and academic success,” said Williams.

Drawing from this expertise, Williams plans to focus on providing soft-skill programming that equips students with essential digital tools, knowledge of learning management systems (LMS), access to online resources, and proficiency in productivity software.

As the Young House Resident Mentor, Williams aims to offer a well-rounded mix of activities throughout the year, prioritizing improvements in academic experiences, promoting collaborative and service-oriented engagements, and raising awareness of mental health and self-care. Additionally, she seeks to foster a sense of unity among the student body by embracing and celebrating their diversity.

“I want to foster a supportive learning environment that reduces stereotypes, prejudices, and biases while promoting inclusivity, empathy and understanding, collaboration and teamwork, and critical thinking and problem-solving to help prepare students for an increasingly interconnected and globalized world,” said Williams.

Furthermore, Williams recognizes the importance of involving students in the decision-making process when it comes to mentorship programming. By actively engaging students in shaping the activities, she believes the initiatives will be more targeted and effective, meeting their needs at the right time.

“Providing regular opportunities to become active participants in their own learning journeys can empower students and enhance the overall quality and effectiveness of their residence life experiences,” said Williams.

Creating a welcoming atmosphere is one of Williams' top priorities. She aims to set up the Young House apartment with a comforting aesthetic to make students feel at ease when dropping by for a chat. She is genuinely excited about getting to know the residents and establishing strong connections with them. Williams hopes to establish an environment where students feel comfortable discussing their needs, concerns, and successes.

As Lyon College welcomes Sarah Williams as the new Young House Resident Mentor, the campus community can look forward to a caring and dedicated individual who is ready to make a positive impact on students' lives. Williams' personal experiences, educational background, and passion for student success position her well to provide the guidance and support necessary for Lyon students to thrive during their college journey.

Williams, her daughter Shaela, and their dog Finn, a poodle-catahoula mix, will move into the Young House Residence this summer.

Posted by Colton Strader at 08:33