A long-standing initiative of P.A.W. Journey, TIGERHOOD is a network of mentors afforded to the Clemson Football scholar-athletes. The name TIGERHOOD encompasses the vision of a community of wise and trusted mentors who care, connect, counsel, and conceive the student leaders’ full potentials. Through facilitated outings, mentors and mentees are able to spend quality time together, discussing personal and professional goals and plans of action.

This past year, TIGERHOOD diverged from the typical one-to-one matching of previous mentorship programs. Rather than pairing resources, P.A.W. Journey created an environment where networking skills would be practiced as well as multiple connections established within one outing. The idea of a network promotes the utilization for different mentors in different areas of life, maximizing the roles each mentor is able to play in the lives of our young men.

As a part of this network establishment, P.A.W. Journey hosts semesterly events that provide compliant pathways for connection. Life Skills opportunities are also built into each event, prompting learning and evaluation for the students throughout these initiatives. Whether it be through mentor speed-connecting, or by a causal round of TopGolf, the opportunity to increase one’s social capital and resources expands with each event. By passing out business cards, reconnecting on individual follow-up, and by practicing that golf swing, student leaders are able to implement business skills with a community of caring mentors interested in the personal and professional development of our Tigers.

Out most recent meeting introduced our newest Tigers to the network through the help of a paint facilitation. With our summer entry-freshmen painting alongside business leaders, former players, and mentors of diverse experiences, the group was able to bond in a casual setting, while accomplishing a goal and implementing mental health practices. Receiving their first set of business cards, the young leaders were further inaugurated into Clemson’s culture of utilizing the influence of football to create new opportunities and relationships that last a lifetime.