Khalil Mosley is looking forward this fall to being a mentor to other students of color attending Augustana College. A beneficiary of Augustana’s PACE Multicultural Mentoring Program for first-year students, and ACI’s Peer Mentoring Program, which benefits men of color, Mosley knows how peer mentors can help incoming students, especially students who are underserved, first-generation students. “I want to say I’m capable of guiding a person toward becoming the best version of themselves,” says Mosley. “It’s going to be learning experience for me that I can guide a person toward being their best self everyday, building different connections and building different bonds.”
Mosley, a junior from Chicago, is the oldest of four children in his family, including one sister and two brothers. He attended North Lawndale College Prep in the city, where he was able to take advantage of the school’s Phoenix Pact. That program is a scholarship and alumni support program for students to attend partner colleges, such as Augustana College. While visiting Augustana, Mosley says he met a number of students and North Lawndale College Prep alumni, which helped him decide on Augustana versus other colleges he visited.
At the Rock Island, Illinois college, he is a communication studies and graphic design major. Mosley wants to improve his own communications skills, he said. “With graphic design, I’ve always been an artist since day one, and I’m familiar with a lot of software and technology that involves graphic design,” Mosley said. “I have experience with that type of software and platforms, and different apps on my phone and my iPad.” He’s also a tattoo artist, and hopes to work in a graphic design occupation as a career, he said.
Mosley attributes some of his success in college to Augustana’s first-year PACE Program and ACI’s Peer Mentoring Program. “My freshman year, I was really nervous. It’s hard to explain how nervous I was because it’s my first time. Going to college, and I’m the first generation in my family to go to college, so, it’s lot of pressure built up, and it was just nerve-wracking.” Specifically, Jaylin Strong, a student mentor from Homewood, Illinois, was a great help in the first-year PACE program, and in ACI’s Peer Mentoring Program, Ashley Allen, director, Office of Student Inclusion and Diversity, has been a helpful guide, Mosley said.
“If I did not have a mentor, I honestly don’t think I would have been able to survive on my own, or I would have to find a harder way to meet new people,” he said. “This program really helps diversity. It really helps a lot of students of color come together as one. It helps students get out of their nervousness. It helps students evolve as a person.” If he could talk to potential donors, Mosley said he would emphasize the program’s diversity and the guidance mentors provide to new college students.
In addition to serving as an ACI Mentor, Mosley has been an active member of Augustana College’s Black Student Union and served as its fundraising chair.