Springboards for Success
SQ Mentors funnel their energy, expertise and passion into a culture of partnership, stewardship, and learning. Through positive, nurturing interactions, SQ Mentors help students navigate their schoolwork, explore their interests, and express their independence.
SQ Mentors encourage resilience, as they help students practice their study skills, manage their time, set reasonable goals, and establish a pattern for overcoming challenge. Regular, structured conversations keep students on track with their academics, as well as their personal and professional relationships. SQ Mentors hold students accountable for their learning as they:
- Identify students’ strengths and weaknesses
- Teach them to connect their actions to results
- Cultivate personal growth, positive thinking, and confidence
SQ Mentors & Facilitator Team
Sallie brings years of experience in scholarship administration, youth programming, and family support to the SQ Scholars. Over the last eight years, she designed and administered a $1 million scholarship program through Chicago's Big Shoulders Fund. She has also served as a parent mentor in private and community workshops, and established programs for pregnant and/or parenting teens at a homeless teenage girls’ shelter. In the 1990s, she developed a tutoring program for a neighborhood school that is still active today. Sallie’s recent Horticultural Therapy certification from the Chicago Botanic Garden will open new avenues for her work in community service and programming.
Janet is SQ Scholars’ go-to math and science guru. With focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics), Janet has completed a recent online “tinkering” certification, which is slated for SQ Scholar programming. She has served 15 years as a tutor in high school math and science, ACT, and SAT test preparation. Prior to her role in teaching, Janet worked for 15 years as a software engineer, where she designed industrial control systems, computer graphics, and database systems, and mentored new graduates. She also received the Rockwell Automation Innovation Award. Janet earned Outstanding Graduate Awards and summa cum laude recognition from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside with BS degrees in both computer science and mathematics.
Stacy brings organizational leadership, people management, and advocacy skills to help SQ Scholars on multiple levels. Through her years in charge of growing memberships, coordinating special events, and negotiating complex environments, Stacy has developed a calming and effective personal style. She currently works as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) in Lake County, representing abused and neglected children in the juvenile court system. In addition to coordinating multi-team sports events (often involving more than 500 people), Stacy has taught ACT test preparation and worked as an attorney for injured clients. She holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Chicago Law School and a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Michigan.
Carly leads with clarity and focus while encouraging students to take charge of their own learning. Her philosophy stems from her work as an elementary special education teacher in Highland Park, part of North Shore School District 112. In breaking learning into manageable segments, she has helped students of all levels set and reach their goals to overcome their learning challenges. Carly earned her bachelor's degree in special and elementary education from Indiana University in 2010. In May 2015, she earned her master's degree in reading from Concordia University.
Teresa is the director of Diversity, Inclusion & Outreach at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. Prior to this administrative role, she taught university-level strategic public relations for more than 17 years, including widely published research in media advocacy and health issues related to minorities. Teresa holds a Ph.D. in Mass Media from Michigan State University in 1998 and has served as a Fulbright specialist in Rwanda and Kenya, Africa. In addition to her service on various professional boards, Teresa serves on the boards of HerStory Centre (Nairobi, Kenya) and Community Counseling Centers of Chicago (C4).
Will offers SQ Scholars college-planning and application perspectives. As a professional college enrollment manager, Will is an experienced graduate admissions and financial aid advisor spanning high school, college and graduate levels. He has worked for public, private, and selective colleges and universities, including DePaul University, Northwestern University, and Elmhurst College. Will’s particular interest centers on student development, which prompted his creation of a lasting high school-to-college bridging program and lends to his success as one-on-one college coach. Will earned his undergraduate degree with honors in psychology from the University of Iowa and a graduate degree in higher education student affairs from the University of South Carolina.
Eliana is using her Tufts University degree in drama and child development as a Teaching Artist for Storycatchers Theatre. This nationally recognized drama program coaches at-risk youth to rewrite positive personal stories. Eliana has tutored Catholic middle-school students for the High School Placement Test (HSPT). She has also taught executive functioning skills at Chicago’s Nurturing Wisdom and worked as an assistant clinician for LEEP Forward’s therapeutic preschool. Eliana’s drama studies in Moscow, Russia, give her an edgy, global perspective, as she leads drama programs and shares her energy with SQ Scholars.