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tnAchieves searching for 4,500 more mentors across state around a month before the deadline

The deadline to apply is Oct. 21, 2022.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The tnAchieves program connects graduating high school students headed to college with mentors to help them transition into their new collegiate careers. It's part of a scholarship program that helps students pursue higher education. However, officials with the program said Monday that they need more volunteers.

They said people have until Oct. 21 to sign up to be a mentor and help students adjust to being in college. In total, they said they need around 4,500 mentors across Tennessee. In Knox County specifically, they need 265 more people to sign up.

It operates with the Tennessee Promise program, and many students who participate in it are the first ones in their families to go to college. The program gives scholarships to students who attend community college or a technical program after graduating high school.

“I wouldn’t have gotten this far without a mentor behind me through this journey,” said Shychuria, a tnAchieves college graduate. “They taught me that no matter where you come from, it’s about where you are going. It’s important to chase your dreams.”

Volunteers spend an hour per month with their mentees, giving them support and encouragement while also helping guide them through college life. Mentors help between eight and ten high school seniors. People who sign up are given training from tnAchieves. 

They are hoping to recruit a total of 9,000 mentors for 2023. A list of the number of mentors needed in East Tennessee counties is available below. Anyone who wants to volunteer can sign up online.

  • Anderson County: 59 mentors needed
  • Blount County: 99 mentors needed
  • Campbell County: 19 mentors needed
  • Cocke County: 20 mentors needed
  • Cumberland County: 35 mentors needed
  • Fentress County: 15 mentors needed
  • Grainger County: 6 mentors needed
  • Greene County: 59 mentors needed
  • Hamblen County: 43 mentors needed
  • Hawkins County: 47 mentors needed
  • Jefferson County: 0 mentors needed
  • Knox County: 265 mentors needed
  • Loudon County: 25 mentors needed
  • McMinn County: 40 mentors needed
  • Meigs County: 7 mentors needed
  • Monroe County: 40 mentors needed
  • Morgan County: 12 mentors needed
  • Rhea County: 22 mentors needed
  • Roane County: 4 mentors needed
  • Scott County: 21 mentors needed
  • Sevier County: 76 mentors needed

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