What is AMP?
The Autism Mentoring Program (AMP) was created in 2011 for the purpose of helping on-campus students on the Autism Spectrum navigate the natural rigors of higher education. We believe that a little bit of guidance and support can make a significant impact on your college experience.
AMP is designed to provide participants with two trained peer mentors to help with social difficulties, daily living skills, and/or academic concerns, at no cost. Participants meet with their mentors once a week for one hour at a location and time of their choosing. The length and frequency of these meetings can be adjusted based on individual needs. In these meetings, mentors will help participants set and reach personal goals. Mentors understand the demands of college and are there to act as a support system as participants create a game plan for success and access local and campus resources.
There are a few things that our program does not provide. We do not replace other campus resources such as Academic Advising, Financial Aid, Disability Services, and the Counseling Center. However, our mentors are trained to help direct you to the resources you need.
It is also important to understand that our mentors are not meant to act as therapists, replacement parents, or assigned friends. However, they do act as guides, partners, and coaches. We have wonderful mentors who are kind, empathetic, and eager to help their fellow students.
Our program proudly supports self-advocacy. We understand that many parents initiate the search for resources and programs like ours, but we strongly encourage students to take the steps to join. When a student reaches out to us, their experience in our program becomes self-directed. Students who feel in control of their college experience oftentimes show a greater eagerness and dedication to mentoring. This in turn leads to a better experience and greater success. We look forward to communicating directly with students about their personal interest in our program.
AMP is currently quite a small program with great plans for improvement and expansion. As we improve our program, we hope you will join with us in this process.
Still have questions? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Should I Join?
- Are you stressed about time management?
- Do you feel like your life is unorganized?
- Is your school schedule/workload overwhelming at times?
- Do you want to learn more about the local/campus resources available to you?
- Are you having a hard time making new friends or getting along with your roommates?
- Is it your first time living alone and you are struggling with cooking, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, etc.?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, you could benefit from having peer mentors. Our mentors are compassionate volunteers, who, like you, are current BYU-Idaho students. They understand the rigors of college life and are ready and willing to help you.
If you think this program could help you, call and set up an appointment today. Our current and past participants agree that this program is a great resource for students with Autism. Here are some things participants have said about their mentors:
“They were willing to share their time so that we could sit and talk”
“They helped me with questions, lent me a hand, and guided me”
“They created a positive atmosphere”
“They were patient”
“I felt close to them”
“They took me on outings and helped me open up”
“They helped me finish my FAFSA”
“They helped me with planning and organization”
“They took the time to really figure out what I was struggling with and then they helped me fix those problems”
“They directed me towards useful resources”
Frequently Asked Questions
Is there any cost associated with this program?
No, this is a free resource to all students with Autism.
How do you gather mentors?
Our mentors are volunteers who choose to join our program. We screen all our mentors to ensure they can meet the basic program requirements. We use several methods of recruitment such as sending invites to entire departments, presenting to classes, and by communicating with individuals who show mentoring potential.
How quickly will I be paired with mentors?
Once you have met with the AMP Coordinator, she will pair you with mentors as soon as they become available, which is usually within the same day. You will receive the names and contact information of your mentors via email, and they should reach out to you within the week.
When is the best time to join the program?
You can meet with the AMP Coordinator either at the end of a semester in preparation for the following semester, or you can meet at the beginning of a semester. We accept new participants through week 7 of each semester. The sooner you set up an appointment to meet with the program Coordinator, the quicker you will be paired with mentors. Remember that in the first couple weeks of the semester you make big decisions regarding your entire semester. Having a mentor through that process could be extremely beneficial.
Can I leave the program if I decide it is not right for me?
You may choose to drop from the program at any time, although we strongly encourage participants to meet with the AMP Coordinator to discuss the situation and determine the best plan of action.
What if I don’t feel like I am connecting well with my mentors?
You can meet with the AMP Coordinator to talk more about this situation. If needed, you can be paired with different mentors. Remember, it takes time to build these types of relationships. Usually, if you give it time, you will connect well with your mentors.