Welcome to PENCIL's Career Explorers

Thank you for your interest in mentoring with PENCIL!

The PENCIL Careers Explorers Program will support a cohort of students engaged in a paid work-based learning experience designed to promote career awareness, exploration, and preparation during the summer of 2024. Participating students will engage in 120 hours of paid work-based learning during which they will complete an industry-specific project with support from a professional mentor who can provide technical expertise, knowledge, and experience; and under the supervision of PENCIL staff, as well as engage in regular enrichment activities.

Please carefully review all information below. PENCIL will match Mentors to students based upon alignment of interests and skills/expertise. We cannot guarantee all interested mentors will be matched to a student. PENCIL will invite mentors not matched to a student to participate in enrichment activities throughout the Career Explorers Program.

If you have any questions about this agreement or the Career Explorers Program, please contact Carly Melillo at CMelillo@pencil.org or (646) 638-6424.


To ensure the safety of all students, staff and Business Volunteers engaged in PENCIL, all participants of Program activities, including the Career Explorers, Partnership Program, Points of Engagement, and all other Volunteer Events, are asked to adhere to the policies described below:
  • All program participants must maintain the confidentiality of all personal or proprietary information to which they are exposed to in PENCIL programs, regardless of the subject matter of such information. This includes, but is not limited to, the names, locations, or images of students they encounter through their work with PENCIL.
  • Any unlawful or inappropriate activity.
  • Business Volunteers may not engage in any unsupervised contact with students, including in person, phone and electronic communications.
  • PENCIL will be included on all authorized exchanges between Business Volunteers and students.
  • Business Volunteers are prohibited from meeting with students outside of PENCIL Programmatic activities. This includes the times directly before or after an activity.
  • Business Volunteers may not use their participation in PENCIL Program activities to promote partisan politics, religious matters, or other affiliations.
  • Volunteers and/or students involved in allegations of misconduct are subject to immediate suspension and possible dismissal from the program. 
  • Program participants are expected to serve in a respectful, professional, and cooperative manner. While working with PENCIL, students, school staff and Business Volunteers must not engage in the following:
        - Discriminatory, derogatory, racist or homophobic statements or behaviors.       
Sexual harassment, for example, jokes, innuendos, insults, sexist remarks, the display of derogatory or pornographic pictures, leering, touching, or kissing.
         The use of any alcohol or illegal drugs.
         - Language or activities that could have the effect of unreasonably and substantially interfering with a students’ ability to participate in or benefit from programming, including bullying or threats.          

In order to ensure the safety of students in PENCIL programs, PENCIL will conduct an annual search of the New York State Public Registry of Sex Offenders for all Business Volunteers.  Therefore, PENCIL asks Business Volunteers to furnish certain participant information (e.g., name, zip code) before they engage in volunteer activities. PENCIL will use that information to conduct a search of the New York State Public Registry of Sex Offenders. If you have questions or concerns, please contact Gregg Betheil at gbetheil@pencil.org for more information.


Career Explorer activities will take place between July 1st and August 9th. PENCIL expects the typical mentor will invest approximately 2 to 3 hours per week to support their student and the Career Explorers Program. Mentors participating in the Career Explorers Program are expected to participate in the activities described below and adhere to all listed guidelines for program participation:

  • Participate in a 60 minute orientation webinar with PENCIL staff.
  • Engage in one planning meeting with PENCIL and their assigned student(s) to establish learning goals and develop an aligned project
  • Weekly 30-45 minute ‘face-to-face’ check in with their student
  • Availability to respond to student outreach (email, text, call) between mentoring sessions
  • Provide PENCIL with regular feedback including notes on weekly check in meetings
  • Participation in one cohort network development activity
  • Leverage your colleagues and peers to create connections for students that will support the collaboration component of their project, as well as the development of a robust and diverse professional network
  • Participate in a final celebration and sharing of student projects




PENCIL is interested in ensuring our programming meets the need of all students. The information provided here will not affect your participation in the partnerships in any way.