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Washington State University Global Campus

Providing Support for the Online Student Experience

The Virtual Mentor (VM) program is a unique and valuable support service available to students and instructors through the Global Campus. VMs are former online students who use their expertise and past experiences to help Global Campus Cougs get the most out of their online student experience.

The VM program is supported by online student’s Services and Activities (S&A) fees in recognition of the importance of building community and providing logistical support to students in online courses to help bridge physical distances and increase student success.

VMs are available in many of WSU’s Global Campus courses, so check your course space for a Virtual Mentor Forum in the discussion board area. The VM will be monitoring your course to help answer questions about using Blackboard, WSU resources, and basic tech issues. You can read the tips the VMs provide in the forum, or you can post or email them your own questions.

If the VM can’t solve your problem, they’ll be able to tell you who can help! However, VMs are not teaching assistants and cannot help with academic content, so be sure to send those questions to your instructor.

Roles of Virtual Mentors

It’s the goal of your Virtual Mentors to make your online learning experience better. They accomplish this by:

  • Monitoring student introduction forums and reaching out to students that are new or nervous about online courses, making them feel welcome as well as offering their support.
  • Providing tips and resources to help you get the most out of Blackboard and Canvas.
  • Offering tips and troubleshooting for media issues, issues with proctored exams, and some course tools such as Leganto, VoiceThread, and Perusall. If the VM cannot help solve a problem they will be able to direct you to other assistance.
  • Continually looking for connections between students and ways to help you take charge of your own learning.
  • Guiding you to other WSU resources, such as Wellness, ASWSUG events, and more.

Want to be a Virtual Mentor?

We’re looking for new Virtual Mentors to join the team. If you’re a Global Campus student who is interested in helping your fellow students, then we’d love to hear from you. Check out the roles of the Virtual Mentors mentioned above to see if this sounds like it’s up your alley.

As a Virtual Mentor:

  • You get to learn about not only the technical side of online instruction, but also about the many resources WSU offers
  • You get the satisfaction of guiding fellow students through challenges that can impede their academic progress
  • You can perform your duties at home on your own schedule, apart from a couple of meetings each semester
  • You get experience as a WSU hourly employee; compensation starts at $14.50 per hour

To apply to join the team, fill out our application! We do require a recommendation from a WSU instructor, so be prepared to provide their name, email, and the course you took with them.

Email Angela Bonner, angelab@wsu.edu, with any questions about the application process.

Tips from Your Virtual Mentors

Your Virtual Mentors also post tips to help you along the way. Read the three most recent posts below or explore them all on our Global Campus blog.

Have Questions?

If you have questions about the award-winning VM program, you can ask your Virtual Mentor or email the program coordinator, Angela Bonner, at angelab@wsu.edu.