The newly named Mentoring and Academic Achievement pillar of Boston College’s Pine Manor Institute for Student Success will be led by Karl Bell, the associate director of TRIO Student Support Services, who will serve as director of Mentoring and Academic Achievement.
Joy Moore, University vice president and executive director of the Pine Manor Institute, announced the appointment as part of a realignment that brings Learning to Learn, Options through Education, TRIO Student Support Services, and the McNair Scholars Program under the Mentoring and Academic Achievement pillar of the PMI.
The Pine Manor Institute for Student Success was established in 2020 as part of a $100 million University initiative to enhance access and opportunities for underrepresented, first-generation students. It consists of four pillars: Mentoring and Academic Achievement; the Academy, a readiness program for students in grades 8-12 that was successfully launched this past summer; Messina College, a two-year, associate-degree granting residential college division of Boston College that will begin in the 2024-2025 academic year; and an alumni outreach program that will serve graduates of the Academy and Messina College.
Moore said that Bell was the ideal leader to direct the University’s mentoring and academic achievement efforts through the Pine Manor Institute.
“Karl is an experienced professional with a proven track record in helping underrepresented students to succeed,” said Moore. “The goal of the PMI is to create a student success coaching model for all of the students we serve at Boston College, from eighth- to 12th-graders in the Academy program to Messina College and BC undergrads. Research shows that students succeed best when they have a mentor coach as their champion. We are fortunate that the Pine Manor Institute has the resources needed to successfully provide these services, and pleased that Karl will lead this important effort.”
The Academy: A cost-free readiness program for students in grades 8–12 that begins after seventh grade and continues through high school.
Mentoring and Academic Achievement: Boston College’s academic support and mentoring initiatives—Learning to Learn, Options through Education, TRIO Student Support Services, and the McNair Scholars Program—reside under this pillar.
Messina College: A two-year residential college division of Boston College that will begin its associate degree-granting program inthe 2024-2025 academic year.
Alumni Outreach: This pillar will provide support for graduates of the Academy and Messina College for up to two years after graduation.
Bell said he was thrilled to serve as the inaugural director of Mentoring and Academic Achievement, and to advance Boston College’s commitment to underrepresented and underserved students.
“As a first-generation, low-income student myself, the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues in the PMI in service to students who identify similarly is a professional opportunity that I could not have ever imagined,” said Bell.
“Building on the 40-plus-year history and commitment to excellence of the Learning to Learn Office, the Mentoring and Academic Achievement pillar of the Pine Manor Institute will develop strategic partnerships that will enable us to identify more than 1,000 Boston College alumni, faculty, and staff who will mentor the students we serve—from the Academy and Messina College to Boston College—and prepare them to be engaged citizens through service to others.”
Moore said that these organizational changes will enhance the student experience and allow the PMI to provide consistent, high-quality support and mentoring to underserved and underrepresented students throughout all levels of Boston College.
“We are coming together with more intentional focus on collaboration on behalf of our students,” said Moore. “It is an exciting time for the University and the Pine Manor Institute for Student Success.”
Jack Dunn | University Communications | March 2023