Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Leadership lived: Student mentor hopes to inspire the next generation

Janell Mathus is thankful for the mentors she had growing up. Now, the Clinical Laboratory Science major is giving back at the University of Illinois Springfield.

Mathus volunteers several hours each week as a 4H program mentor. She helps lead educational and fun activities for middle school students and encourages them to follow their dreams.

“I think it’s important to have people who are older than you that you can look up to, interact with and just explore different things in life,” she said.

Mathus also mentors fellow college students as part of the Necessary Steps Program and is a member of the Kinky & Curly Natural Hair Empowerment Club and Legacy Dance Team.

Being a mentor has been an educational experience for Mathus.

“I’ve learned to be a better person because dealing with different types of people you learn about a wide range of different life styles and thought processes,” she said. “I’ve learned to adapt and interact with people.”

Following graduation, she hopes to attend medical school and one day become a researcher in the field.

“UIS has taught me that being a leader is one of the most important things you can do in your life,” she said. “Gaining more knowledge about different things is important.”

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