Students As Mentors (S.A.M.), Catoosa High School
Skylar Peaster, a senior at Catoosa High School, has been named the Outstanding Mentor for Students As Mentors, a program that matches upperclassmen with freshmen to help them make a successful transition to high school.
Advisor and teacher Tawnya Hanigan said when Peaster was first assigned to her Advocacy Group as a freshman she was introverted and shy. As Hanigan got to know Peaster better in her computer class, she found that Peaster was an outstanding student who excelled in class. When a spot opened up for a new mentor in Ms. Hanigan’s Advocacy (Advisory) Group, Peaster asked if she could have the job.
“I was concerned because she was still shy, and the job would require her to speak to the group and be responsible for bringing new freshmen over from the middle school and introducing them, helping them get acclimated to high school,” Hanigan said. “She told me she thought it would help her, so I agreed. Since taking over that role her junior year, she has blossomed. She interacts with the entire group and does not mind leading activities or giving the freshman the push they need when necessary. I am so proud to see the amazing young woman she has become.”
Peaster was praised for her hard work, dedication to the program, holding freshman accountable and helping others who struggle with shyness. “It warms my heart to see how far she has come and seeing her personality really come out.” Hanigan added.
About the Program: Catoosa High School's Students as Mentors (SAM) program is focused on peer mentoring. An upperclassman is chosen by each teacher to represent their advisory class called Advocacy. Those students receive training in monthly meetings on how to mentor younger students transitioning to high school. Each mentor has approximately three mentees to assist. Additional responsibilities of mentors are college readiness and school spirit projects.