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Volumes of Confidence

Mentors help themselves by helping others.

People  |  Nov 22, 2017  |  By UNLV Foundation
donor and student

Donor Flora Mason, left, and undergraduate Kameron Joyner.

Editor's Note: 

This is part of the In UNLV We Trust series. These stories explore the reasons donors give to UNLV and the direct impact they have on the beneficiaries of their gifts.


As Kameron Joyner learned to navigate his way around the 1.2 million volumes and 300+ databases at University Libraries, he discovered the route to his future success.

“I am now a completely different person than I was freshman year,” says Joyner, a senior at Lee Business School and a fourth-year participant in the Stuart and Flora Mason Undergraduate Peer Research Coach program at University Libraries. “I used to be introverted and had no idea where I was going. Now, I’m more confident and feel prepared to go out into the world.”

Joyner could be a case study in how the Mason Undergraduate Peer Research Coach program lifts up at-risk students by building their skill sets and engaging them as educators. Peer coaches are mentored by libraries staff so that they have the expertise to help other students access and analyze information.

The program was started in 2006 by Flora and Stuart Mason to provide an opportunity for students to learn a variety of academic and life skills, including project management, networking, research, and presenting.

“I see the peer coach program as an instrument through which students can shape their entire lives,” says Flora Mason, a UNLV alumna, former member of UNLV’s English faculty, and a founding member of the Libraries’ Advisory Board. “When I think of the program’s future, I think about how its effects will endure.”

Flora and her late husband Stuart moved to Las Vegas in 1965, and always shared a belief in the value of the educational role of libraries to make a difference in students’ lives for generations to come.

“The lessons I’m learning will always apply,” Joyner affirms. “I’ve learned how to be a critical thinker. I’ve developed relationships with students from different cultures and backgrounds. I’ve had a full college experience that will always be relevant.”

Learn more about UNLV Foundation giving programs.