Club & Greek

Seeing Eye to Eye in Order to Make a Difference

Club Offers Mentoring Program to Children with Learning Disabilities

Dana Oppenheim brought the program Eye to Eye, a mentoring movement for different thinkers, to the University this past year.  Eye to Eye is a program for children with learning disabilities/ADHD. Their mission is to improve the life of every person with a learning disability. The mission statement says, “We fulfill our mission by supporting and growing a network of youth mentoring programs run by and for those with learning differences, and by organizing advocates to support the full inclusion of people with learning disabilities and ADHD in all aspects of society.”

Eye to Eye can be found in 51 colleges and high schools throughout the country, and is growing every year. In New Jersey, Eye to Eye can be found at The Pennington School & Cambridge School, New Jersey City University and here at Monmouth University; this makes our program the only one like this in the southern half of the state.

Dana Oppenheim and Christina Gonzalez are the head coordinators and they operate under a national coordinator who is based in the National Eye to Eye offices in NYC. Currently, there are three mentors who work with the mentees here at the University. Skip Carey, the Director of Disability Services for Students, is also heavily involved in the organization.

Oppenheim said, “I brought the program to the University with the hope to provide for kids through Monmouth County that are normally just swept under the rug and give them the ability to build their confidence by interacting with college student who were just like them when they were younger.” 

She also points out that although there are many other tutoring and learning programs available to children and student’s these days, Eye to Eye stands apart from the other programs because they send the message to the children that it is possible for them to set and achieve goals in every aspect of their life. Oppenheim went on to say, “Although they think differently, it does not have to hold them back and prevent them from being successful in anything they want to do in life.”

According to Associate Professor, within the English department, Dr. Stanley Blair, “Eye to Eye provides effective support for students’ crucial transition from high school to college. Eye to Eye is one of those rare endeavors that is good for all the students involved, both on and off campus, and for both of the institutions involved. It is a way that the Monmouth University community demonstrably enhances this region.”

“One of my favorite, and I feel most important, part of the programs is that we really urge the mentees to set goals for themselves, which is something most kids with learning disabilities/ADHD are not usually encouraged to do. Because they struggle in school they often are given the stigma that they will not be successful in high school or make it to college, and too often they start believing it themselves which causes them to stop trying,” added Oppenheim. “Through Eye to Eye we provide the support they need to overcome that stigma and set goals for themselves such as applying to college one day or going to law school. Even the smallest goals, for example, completing their English paper a few days before the due date instead of waiting until the last minute, are significant steps in the right direction to success.”

For more information and ways to get involved in the organization, visit