Skip to main content
Indiana University Bloomington

Hutton Honors College

 — Indiana University

Autism Mentoring Program

This project was created by Alexander Murphy-Nakhnikian in 2003 while he was a freshman and an Honors College student. Since its inception this program has grown into a partnership between the Hutton Honors College, the Bloomington Chapter of the Autism Society, Monroe County Community School Corporation and the families of the young people being mentored.

Financial support has been generously provided by a Metz grant and in-kind support by the Hutton Honors College.

Training and ongoing supervision is provided during each semester students are matched with a young person. Intake opportunities are offered each year for IU students with a CGPA of 3.0 or higher.

See below for:

Program Description

The Autism Mentoring Program sets out to provide "buddies" for children in elementary and middle school with Autism or Asperger's Syndrome. Begun in the Fall of 2003 there are currently 12 young people matched with Honors College mentors.

Mentors are expected to arrange one outing per week for one or more hours depending on the activity. This could be mid week or, more typically, on a Saturday or Sunday and needs to be carefully coordinated with the family.

Mentors are asked to commit to one calendar year to provide continuity for the young person. If the match is going well and both mentor and young person want to stay connected beyond this time that would be fine. This is not a requirement.

The goal is to help these children acquire the skills required to function in social situations. Like the Big Brothers/Big Sisters program, volunteers and children engage in various activities one-on-one, such as going out to lunch, seeing a movie, or playing in a park.


Before being matched, potential mentors must complete a short training course, an interview and supply a Limited Criminal History Check, along with a Driver's License and Proof of Car Insurance if they plan to provide transportation to their mentee. Once matched, participation in monthly supervision meetings is mandatory.


We are looking for motivated students who have a sincere interest in serving their community and who enjoy working with children. Prior experience with autism or special needs young people is not required but an advantage.
Students need to be doing well academically, evidenced by a CGPA of 3.0 or highter. Volunteers are required to attend one training session and monthly supervision meetings (evenings), and be dependable in their weekly outings with their "little buddy".
Having your own transportation is a definite advantage but not a core requirement

Mentor Application

Paste the headings below into a word file. Send your completed application to:

Mentor Application

# Semesters enrolled at IU:
Cumulative GPA:
Intended Major(s)/minor(s):
Age/Sex Preference of mentee:
Previous Community Service Experience:
Essay: (this is important - parents will read this as part of the match process)
Briefly describe your interest in the Mentoring Program, you as a person and your hobbies/interests, and what you bring to being a mentor.

For Local Parents

Thank you for your interest in the Autism Mentoring Program for your child. For accountability and safety purposes the number of matches we are able to accomodate is small. Please contact the Coordinator of Student Programs to inquire if we are able to receive new enrollments.
If new enrollments are being received an enrollment form and information about the match process will be sent to you.


Address any questions to the Autism Mentoring Program Intern or Coordinator of Student Programs by sending an email to

2010-11 Intern

Amanda Green

Amanda Green

Get Involved | Mentoring | Community Opportunities | Record Your Service | Spring Break Grant | FAQ