Mentor Spotlight: Patrick Ryan


Today's spotlight is on Patrick Ryan who is a mentor to second-grader LaMarion Burton, aka P-Nut.  Patrick comes to us from TCU where he is a sophomore studying environmental science.  He is involved in musical theater and choir as well as participating on the TCU club lacrosse team.

He heard about Fortress and the Ignite mentoring program through his fraternity, Beta Upsilon Chi. Patrick has experience mentoring kids going back to high school where he was a pal in a similar program that emphasized one-on-one mentoring.

While Patrick has only been mentoring P-nut for five short months, he already has some things he hopes he can teach his mentee. “I hope I can show him what it looks like to be a responsible adult that makes responsible choices so that he can succeed in anything he sets his mind to.”

A word of advice that he would give to other mentors or people new to mentoring kids is that, “You don’t always need to straight up give your mentee advice.  You can help them out just by leading by example because all these kids want is to be your friend.”

And while Patrick hasn’t had a ton of crazy experiences with P-nut yet, he says it was awesome to see how excited P-nut was when he found out he was going to have him as a mentor this year. “It makes our job a whole lot easier, fun and rewarding!”

For more information about the Ignite mentoring program at Fortress or for other volunteer opportunities email Dani Kocur at dani@fortressydc.org.