For more than 10 years, Deutsche Bank has hosted a Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City Workplace Mentoring Program at its offices. First launched at 280 Park, the program is now held at 60 Wall. The workplace program matches public high school students with employees who serve as positive role models and make a difference in their lives. "Littles" visit the office after school to learn about the workplace and develop a relationship with their “Bigs.”
Deutsche Bank recently kicked off a new program year with students from a new high school. Last year's students were seniors and have since graduated. 91% of students from last year’s workplace program went to college. This year, 10 employees have been matched with first-year students from The College Academy (formerly the High School of International Business and Finance). Several of the volunteers are mentoring through Big Brothers Big Sisters for the first time.
The Workplace Mentoring Program follows the highly successful "one-to-one" model used in the traditional Big Brothers Big Sisters program. An experienced program manager plans and facilitates sessions that focus on professionalism, teamwork, communication and ethics. The calendar also includes periodic cultural, recreational and community service trips. Sessions are customized to company culture and interests whenever possible. For example, previous groups have learned about the job search process from Deutsche's HR department or toured the corporate collection with the Art department.
Josephine LaPrade, a vice president in Global Business Systems, is entering her fifth year as a Workplace Mentor. "I am looking forward to working with [my Little] and the new 2010-2011 group. They surely give me energy, and their synergy is contagious," she said.
Deutsche's program meets for a total of 30 hours and will run through May 2011.
The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City is to provide mentors to all children who need caring adult role models--special friends who can help expand their horizons, realize their potential and enrich their futures--changing their lives. The Workplace Mentoring Center encompasses mentoring programs at corporate sites where youth ages 12-17 are introduced to the world of work through a mentor, and employees are given the convenient opportunity to become effective volunteers at work despite their busy schedules. Employee Bigs and their Littles enjoy interactive activities that help the Littles learn about the business world and gain important life skills.