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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Michael D. Crews

Florida Department of Corrections
Michael D. Crews, Secretary

Office of Re-Entry
Bureau of Community Relations

Department of Corrections Mentoring Initiative

The Able Trust E-mentoring Program

Link to use: Florida E-Mentoring Partnership

Career Mentoring for the 21st Century

As our fast-paced society becomes more technologically savvy, The Able Trust helps businesses promote career development for students with disabilities by combining the proven strengths of career mentoring with the convenience of e-mail technology.

The Able Trust E-Mentoring logo

The Able Trust e-Mentoring program connects a caring adult with a student with a disability to provide friendship, support, motivation, and encouragement through the use of e-mail.

E-Mentoring helps to foster a student’s career development skills by a more experienced business person through ongoing, regular communication via email. E-Mentoring differs from traditional mentoring, in that these relationships are often time-limited and mentors can often engage in e-Mentoring during their work day through the convenience of online communications. It is similar to traditional mentoring programs in that all participants are screened and mentoring communications are monitored to ensure the safety and security of everyone involved.

Why Mentoring

Young adults with disabilities face many barriers to productive lives*:

  • Thirty-six percent of youth with disabilities drop out of high school.
  • More than 50 percent of all adjudicated youth are young people with learning disabilities and behavioral disorders.
  • The majority of youth with disabilities come from situations of family poverty.
  • More than half of all chemically-dependent youth have been or are actively on IEPs and receiving special education and related services.
  • Youth with disabilities possess a wide range of "at-risk" characteristics, and clearly comprise a large proportion of "at risk" categories.

Mentoring programs have been shown to help reduce the dropout rate of youth with disabilities, helping them to achieve more meaningful and positive post-school outcomes. Mentoring has been shown to offer the following benefits for mentees:

  • Emotional support;
  • Increased motivation;
  • Location of needed resources;
  • Acquisition of knowledge, skills, and solutions; and
  • Career development information.

The goals . . .

  • Students with disabilities across Florida will develop plans for their careers through mentoring relationships with caring business professionals
  • Business mentors in communities throughout Florida will be immersed in sharing their experiences, encouragement, and career knowledge while their mentees are motivated by the new possibilities in their lives.
  • Florida businesses will learn more about the capabilities of youth with disabilities as the future workforce of our state.
  • Students with disabilities will gain the skills and confidence to strive with determination toward their highest goals.

*Grossman, J.B. (1999). The practice, quality and cost of mentoring. In J.B. Grossman (Ed.) Contemporary issues in mentoring. New York: Public/Private Ventures.