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A mentor leading a group of students

Focus Forward

Focus Forward is a school-based mentoring program that strives to enrich the lives of students in our community. We match middle-school and high-school students from participating school districts with trained and supported undergraduate mentors, under the supervision of SUNY Oswego professional staff, who help provide the academic and social support necessary for each student to achieve their full potential.

Mentors provide academic tutoring and social support to district-identified "opportunity" students through personalized one-to-one or one-to-two relationships. You will help mentees develop effective study habits and interpersonal skills for school and life success. Mentors also assist in creating academic goals and providing the necessary support to see their mentees achieve them.

Apply to be a Mentor


Why Be A Mentor?

Focus Forward allows you to impact the Oswego community while gaining valuable professional skills.  You will learn more about adolescent development and youth mentoring, and have the opportunity to earn course credit through GST 311. As an academic and social support program, you'll work to build the local students' self-confidence and self-efficacy while giving them the tools they need to be effective learners.

Benefits of being a Mentor include:
  • getting 1:1 Mentoring Experience, while making a difference in the life of a middle school or high school student
  • all undergraduate majors and levels (First Year - Senior) can gain valuable experience and skills
  • earning 1 Upper Division Credit each semester for up to 8 semesters
  • the opportunity for qualified returning Mentors to apply to be a Team Leader to gain more valuable Leadership Experience and 2 Upper Division credits


Requirements for becoming a Mentor include:
  • being in good academic standing (at least 2.0 GPA)
  • enrolling in GST 311 for 1-credit per semester
  • completing the Interview and application process. Are you a returning Focus Forward mentor? If so, please email your availability to [email protected]
Sites and Schedule

Focus Forward is a commitment. Students must be available during one of the times below for the entire Academic semester. Should you have a class conflict, we will do our best to place you at another site based on your availability. 

  • Monday & Wednesday 2:00-3:55 p.m. - 7th-8th Grade - Oswego Middle School
  • Wednesday 12:30-2:30 p.m. - 9th-12th Grade - CiTi Bridges to Success
  • Thursday 2:10-4:45 p.m. 9th-12th Grade - Oswego High School

Apply to Be a Mentor

Review our program requirements and check to see if you're available during our scheduled times at the local schools. If you're able to participate, fill out an application, and, based on your qualifications, we'll contact you about an interview and next steps. If you are a returning Focus Forward mentor, please email your availability to [email protected]

Apply to be a Mentor

Focus Forward has been one of my favorite experiences at SUNY Oswego. Not only have I felt at home with the students and staff, I have also developed new skills which I have used in other aspects of my college career.

Focus Forward allowed me to become a positive influence in someone else's life.

I joined Focus Forward my first semester of college and have continued into my last semester. I truly feel I have made lasting connections and had lifelong impacts.

This program has not only allowed me to feel more comfortable with who I am, but to be more empathetic and understanding of others.


Focus Forward
145Q Marano Campus Center
[email protected]

Kevin O'Connor, Coordinator -  [email protected]