Mentor Matching Engine

Mentor Matching Engine

Through our membership with the Illinois Science & Technology Institute, NIU is playing an active role in encouraging high quality research experiences for high school students. The Mentor Matching Engine is an invitation-based platform that brings together mentors, students and teachers for personalized inquiry-based learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. By connecting mentors and students electronically, we are able to offer high-quality mentoring experiences for students and mentors alike in a safe and secure environment while eliminating geographic barriers.

Please review the resource pages that include information to further explains:

  • Role and expectations of being a mentor;
  • How the Mentor Matching Engine works;
  • How to complete a background check; and
  • How you can create your profile and start the process of being a student research mentor

The R&D STEM Learning Exchange is a project of the Illinois Science & Technology Institute, which is partnering with 15 pilot schools and mentors from organizations, including NIU in order to test the Mentor Matching Engine in a way that allows us to look carefully at user experience and areas for improvement. Because of your previous experience mentoring students and participating in outreach activities, we would love to have your input during this critical pilot year.

We invite faculty to take part in a pilot e-mentoring program where each participant can mentor high school students involved in inquiry-based research, using a new virtual platform called the Mentor Matching Engine. High school students and teachers who are part of the R&D STEM Learning Exchange are seeking professionals to help make learning interesting, complicated, and applied to the real world. Consider volunteering to participate in their learning by becoming a mentor on the Mentor Matching Engine.

NIU Contact:

Renique Kersh, Associate Vice Provost for Engaged Learning

Become a mentor!

If you are interested in Mentor Matching Engine program email Renique Kersh at You will be sent an invite email from Please open the link in that email to create a profile and become a mentor. Please keep in mind that students need mentors at all different times so do not worry if you are not "matched" right away!