FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS // ADVISORS + VALIDATORS
Who is eligible to serve as a Congressional Award Advisor or Validator?
Any adult may serve in this role with the exception of parents, relatives, and peers. Congressional Award Gold Medalists may also serve, regardless of their age.
What is the time commitment to serve?
There is no specific time requirement to serve. However, Advisors and Validators should plan to stay in periodic touch with the person who requested their involvement. After the initial goal planning, this might include an occasional phone call, text, or lunch. If a Validator is already a coach or similiar, simply making a point to check in about the participant's progress at practice might be enough. Mentorship is most effective when there is a two-way relationship.
Do I receive financial compensation for serving as an Advisor or Validator?
No. Your service to Wyoming Congressional Award is entirely voluntary without financial compensation.
What if my advisee wants to change his/her goal(s)?
Sometimes circumstances change and it's absolutely OK to assist your advisee in revising his/her goals.
What other responsibilities do I have as an Advisor or Validator?
For Advisors, you'll encourage your advisee to obtain written comments and signatures from Validators as soon as goals have been met; review goals and sign to certify their completion before advisee moves to the next level; retains a photocopy of each completed Record Book; assists in the formation of new goals for the next level.
May I serve as Advisor or Validator for more than one youth at a time?
There is no restriction on how many youth you may advise, though be sure you have the time to devote to each.
What if the youth I'm working with doesn't follow through with the program?
While you're in a position to encourage and motivate a participant to keep up with the program, it is not your responsibility to force participation.
What if my circumstances change and I can't continue to serve as an Advisor or Validator?
Life is full of the unexpected; if for some reason you determine you are unable to continue serving, be sure to communicate that to the youth you're advising or serving as validator for. Ideally, you'd provide some potential candidates that may be able to jump into the role.
I was asked to serve as an Advisor or Validator by a family friend who lives out of state. Is this permissible?
Or course—students all over the country participate in Congressional Award. As long as you make the commitment to bridge distance through available technology like the occasional telephone call, text, Facetime, or Skype, you are free to work with any participant. The procedure for returning a Record Book may be a little different, but the premise of the program remains the same.
What qualifications does an Advisor have to meet?
The only qualification required is a willingness to mentor youth.
What qualifications does a Validator have to meet?
A Validator should possess the desire to mentor youth, plus a working knowledge of a specific activity you were asked to supervise. For example, if a participant is working toward a specific goal of competing giants in gymnastics, a rancher with no knowledge of gymnastics skills is not a good fit for serving as a Validator for that particular Physical Fitness goal.
I have a question that isn't answered here. Who should I contact?
You may contact the Wyoming Congressional Award Council office at 514-2004 or firstname.lastname@example.org at any time with questions! We're always happy to hear from our network of volunteers.
My son/daughter is enrolled in the program and I already advise other participants. Can I also advise or validate for my child?
No. Advisors and Validators may be any adult (or Gold medalist regardless of age) that is not a parent, relative, or peer of the participant.