Students from Georgia State University, Georgia Tech, Emory University, Agnes Scott College, and other area colleges and universities, are invited to apply and be matched with refugee and immigrant students in the community with similar experiences, backgrounds, and career aspirations.  MINA mentors attend monthly summits with their mentees and communicate with them on a regular basis. MINA mentors must submit to a background check, must demonstrate a commitment to refugee and immigrant issues, and must maintain a 2.0 GPA in their current studies, be a graduate student in good standing, or a college alum. Being a successful college student qualifies you to be a mentor with MINA.

  • To become a MINA Mentor submit an application online.
  • MINA members will be in touch regarding your application status.  MINA mentors are assigned a coach who is a member of the MINA executive committee.
  • New MINA Mentors attend a ½ day training and leadership seminar offered in March.  They meet their mentee at the summit and begin their partnership.
  • MINA Mentors correspond with their mentees and attend monthly summit meetings.  MINA Mentors interested in a more active role in the organization are encouraged to join one of the organizing committees.

MINA Mentees:
New American students are referred to MINA by community organizations, NGOs, friends of MINA, and high school teachers.  A MINA mentees will typically fall into one of three categories:
  1. a refugee or immigrant student who is 18 and does not have high school credentials.
  2. a refugee or immigrant student currently a senior in an American high school.
  3. a refugee or immigrant student with foreign high school credentials.

All MINA mentees must complete an interest form.

Monthly Summits:
Monthly summit meetings will focus on one particular aspect of the college application process and college success:
  • GED testing
  • language acquisition
  • college placement tests
  • visa interviews
  • writing essays
  • financial aid
  • scholarships
  • interviews
  • college life
  • choosing a major
  • jobs and internships

Each summit will feature a guest speaker/expert on the topic of the summit.  After a 30 minute presentation, mentors and mentees have time to ask questions and work.  Monthly summits take place at Georgia State University’s Perimeter College, Clarkston campus.

Mentor/Mentee Successes:

Name:  Isaac
Home country:  U.S.A.
Year at Georgia State:  Sophomore
College/school:  Perimeter College, Clarkston campus
Academic/career interests: Computer science and software development.
When I first joined MINA:  It was the spring of 2017 when I joined the Mentoring Initiative for New Americans (MINA), a life-changing volunteer organization. Through MINA, I allocate my free time towards assisting refugees and immigrants, also called mentees, interested in attending college. I help them get prepared for tests, such as the SAT, ACT, and TOEFL, which are required for admittance into Georgia State University’s Perimeter College. I have been working with mentees since the beginning of 2017, but I had a hard time when I first joined. I didn’t know what skills were necessary for mentees to be successful on the placement tests.  By October 2017, our organization partnered with an academic department at Perimeter College on a course designed to give mentees the tools necessary to be successful in college. I also worked closely with professors Debra Denzer and Tim Brotherton to learn how to work with and tutor our mentees more efficiently. As a mentor, I devoted my time to help mentees learn the basic principles of English and grammar structure.  I tutored my mentees for five hours a week in the Clarkston campus Language Lab.  These tutoring hours not only helped the mentees become successful in the course, but I also gained a personal relationship with each of the mentees. The same mentees I helped were accepted into Perimeter College for the spring semester of 2018, and now, the smiles I see on their faces couldn’t be any brighter.

Name:  Omar
Home country:  Somalia
Year at Georgia State:  Freshman
College/school:  Perimeter College, Clarkston campus
Academic/career interests:  Health sciences
Hobbies:  Playing basketball and going to the movies with my friends
When I first joined MINA:  My mentor helped me go through the steps to get into college.  It was a fun process. It was my goal to be accepted into college to prepare for a career in the health sciences.