Mentorship Program Launch

Mentorship Program Launch

By Tim Coppola, ASLA

Mentorship program launch meeting

Prospective Mentors and Mentees gather for Kickoff Meeting

ASLA-NCC launched the kick-off Mentorship meeting on January 24 at the San Francisco AIA Headquarters. Initially, organizers were somewhat apprehensive about the potential turnout since only seventeen people had signed up for the event. However, when the doors opened, any apprehension was immediately dispelled as more than 47 landscape architects and designers arrived. The two years of planning paid off, and the chapter Mentorship program was very well received.  This feels like the Mentorship program’s tipping point: that magic moment when an idea, trend or social event crosses a threshold, then tips and finally spreads like a wildfire.

Participants had a wide range of professional experience, from students to people with 50 years or more of landscape architecture training. Attendees immediately got organized, formed groups based on geographic proximity, and selected leaders. Each group set parameters and goals and decided on their first meeting. Surely the structure and dynamics of each group will evolve for some time, but the program was off to an excellent start.

Šárka Volejníková speaking at Mentorship meeting

Šárka Volejníková, ASLA-NCC President, speaking at Mentorship Program launch

The five Mentorship areas formed so far are the North Bay, San Francisco, the East Bay, the Peninsula and the South Bay. As the night progressed, two distinct groups evolved for San Francisco due to its large size.  Meanwhile, groups from the Peninsula and South Bay decided to capture the energy of a larger group by organizing joint meetings every other month, and separate meetings in the alternate months.

It is our hope, as a chapter, that this will bring a valuable benefit to our membership. We are proud to say that we may be the only ASLA chapter-run Mentorship program in the country. If you have not joined a Mentorship group and wish to do so, please sign up for the program through the Mentorship website.
Congratulations go out to Šárka Volejníková, Tim Coppola, John Black, Laura Leuer, Ann Baker, Mandy Leung, Melinda Stockmann, the EP group, and many others whose hard work helped to make this first meeting a success.

Tim Coppola speaking at Mentorship program launch meeting

Tim Coppola, ASLA Director, speaking at Mentorship Program launch

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