Global Smarts Mentoring Program

"This year Global Smarts was amazing, and one word I would use to describe it to a friend would be ‘life-changing’.  What I like the most about participating in Global Smarts is that I was able to meet new people and learn new things about my assigned country.  Global Smarts taught me that in different parts of the world there are so many problems that I usually wouldn’t think about.”
— 8th Grade Student, St. Rose of Lima School

The Global Smarts Mentoring Program is a grant-funded, rigorous global literacy tutoring program that pairs college-level student mentors from Saint Joseph's University with middle school students from under-resourced and low- to middle-income Philadelphia public, parochial and charter schools.  Through weekly individual and small-group instruction, mentors provide students with the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to confidently participate in the Council's annual, region-wide Jr. Model United Nations Conference.  Launched in 2012, Global Smarts unequivocally and markedly impacts students' enthusiasm for learning, expands their knowledge of world affairs, and sharpens their critical thinking skills and the competencies needed to understand and act on issues of global significance.

At weekly tutoring sessions, mentors work closely with students to fulfill key Jr. Model United Nations curriculum goals, including:

1. Researching a country’s history, culture, government, economy, etc.;
2. Thinking critically and creatively about an issue of global significance (e.g., water scarcity);
3. Writing a well-constructed position paper; and
4. Learning how to draft a policy resolution

Additionally, mentors coach students on oral and written advocacy skills (e.g., public speaking) focused on writing, debating and ultimately defending a final policy resolution, as well as learning to assume leadership roles in their regional blocs.

Global Smarts runs annually from January to May and requires mentors to commit up to ten hours each week working both in- and outside of the classroom under the collective training and supervision of the Council’s Education Department staff and an assigned university faculty member. Mentors earn course credit for their successful completion of the program.

During the *2018-19 academic year, Global Smarts served 150 students from 9 schools across the Greater Philadelphia region, including: 

A.M.Y. at James Martin School
A.M.Y Northwest Middle School
Blessed Trinity Regional Catholic School
Cook-Wissahickon Elementary School
Gesu School
Hope Partnership for Education
New Foundations Charter School
Shawmont School
St. Rose of Lima School

The Global Smarts Mentoring Program has an application process that open to interested schools on an annual basis.  Please contact the Council's Director of Student Programs Kristin Hutchinson at (215) 561-4700, ext. 228 for additional information about the 2019-20 program.

*2019-20 participating schools will be updated at the end of September 2019.

SJU Prospective Mentors - Apply Here!

The Global Smarts Mentoring Program is open to undergraduate sophomores, juniors, and seniors from Saint Joseph's University. To indicate your interest in applying for the Spring 2020 program, please follow the link below to complete a short form.

Global Smarts in the News