The Mitchell Institute offers Scholars a broad range of wraparound supports and resources during and after college to help them hone leadership skills, find and pursue career exploration opportunities, and develop networks that are vital to finding satisfying and purposeful work.
Through nearly three decades of experience and evidence-based research, we know that student success in college depends on more than money. Additional support and guidance during college increase Mitchell Scholars’ chances of attaining a degree, finding meaningful employment in Maine, and strengthening their communities long after college. The Mitchell Institute offers Scholars a broad range of wraparound supports and resources during and after college to help them hone leadership skills, find and pursue career exploration opportunities, and develop networks that are vital to finding satisfying and purposeful work.
Here are the signature wraparound supports and programs available to all Mitchell Scholars free of charge:
The Annual Welcome Celebration
Every year, new Mitchell Scholars and their family members are invited to gather in early August to meet one another, learn about the broad range of supports and programs offered by the Mitchell Institute, hear uplifting speeches from older Mitchell Scholars, enjoy a delicious brunch, and have professional headshots taken for their LinkedIn profiles.
MILE I Weekend
Designed for current college students, the Mitchell Institute Leadership Experience (MILE) I Weekend is held in early October at the New England Outdoor Center in Millinocket. Scholars develop leadership and relationship-building skills while canoeing the Penobscot, hiking to the summit of Mount Katahdin, completing a community service project within Baxter State Park, and making friendships that will last a lifetime.
To help Scholars learn how to navigate the internship search process as well as form networks that can yield internship and career opportunities, the Mitchell Institute Alumni Council (MIAC) organizes the annual Mitchell Institute Leadership Experience (MILE) II in March. This daylong program is generously hosted by Unum and provides Mitchell Scholars and young Alumni with opportunities to meet with business and community leaders from across Maine and attend interactive sessions on topics such as developing resumes and cover letters that get noticed, sharpening interviewing skills, and how to activate your network for the internship and job search.
No-Agenda Coffee Meetings
When Mitchell Scholars and Alumni have a question or two, the Mitchell Institute staff is quick to say, “A no-agenda coffee meeting could be just the thing for you.” Held virtually or at a place of Scholars’ choosing, these chats provide Scholars and Alumni with a chance to ask Institute staff a broad range of questions and learn about resources available to support their goals. Topics often raised by Scholars and Alumni include choosing a major, career exploration, and activating the Mitchell Scholar Alumni Network to leverage internship and career opportunities.
Held annually in fall and spring, on-campus receptions are opportunities to introduce Scholars to their campus leaders and resources, and help them build connections with other Scholars. The gatherings also provide staff with an opportunity to promote the Institute’s array of programs and supports.
The Mitchell Institute offers awards of up to $1,500 to Scholars and Alumni to support their pursuit of career-related internships, professional certifications, study abroad experiences, and service projects. These investments, which Scholars and Alumni can apply for and receive multiple times, empower them to pursue professional development opportunities regardless of financial hurdles. In 2022, the Mitchell Institute awarded more than $92,000
in Fellowships to 83 Mitchell Scholars and Alumni.
The Mitchell Institute offers Scholars two additional sources of funding so that unforeseen or ongoing financial crises don’t deter them from degree completion. While the SOS (Supporting Our Scholars) Fund provides grants to Scholars who have encountered temporary financial challenges such as health emergencies or unexpected changes in their living circumstances, the SPARC (Subsidy Providing Assistance with Recurring Costs) Fund is available to help financially vulnerable Scholars with ongoing expenses and challenges such as food insecurity, course materials, and transportation costs. In 2022, the Mitchell Institute awarded nearly $50,000 in contingency funding to 41 Mitchell Scholars.
Watch Mitchell Institute President and CEO Jared Cash, as well as Mitchell Scholars Jean-Daniel Liwanga, Emily Birdsall, and Tristan Seavey, explain to new Scholars why the Institute’s events and programs make the Mitchell Scholarship so much #morethanascholarship.