Prepared to Take Flight: Ja'Vontae & Marlon

Ja’Vontae, a junior at Chicago Military Academy, met his mentor, Marlon, at the start of the school year. He quickly went from being a skeptic about iMentor to someone who believes all students should have a mentor.

“I have friends in other Chicago high schools where they don’t have the iMentor program,” Ja’Vontae said. “They don’t know which college is the right fit or what they want to major in.”

Ja’Vontae was thrilled that Marlon’s background was a perfect match for his career interests. Since he was young, Ja’Vontae had wanted to pursue a career in the military or law enforcement because the family members he admired most were in the services. Marlon served for 18 years in the Air Force and is now a federal marshal.

“I told Marlon that I wanted to enlist in the Air Force, but I was nervous about passing the ASVAB,” said Ja’Vontae, referring to the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. “I didn’t want to score low because I was nervous about being put in the infantry on the front line.”

Marlon suggested Ja’Vontae consider attending a college that offers ROTC, which would prepare him for the ASVAB.

Now, the pair are identifying colleges that offer ROTC for Air Force and looking at applications. “I think iMentor should be a requirement for everyone,” said Ja’Vontae. “You get that honest opinion about what path you should go down.”