Pharos is designed to bridge the disconnect between incoming students and their new university environment by providing an informal introduction to the local community, campus life, university services, through the access of a powerful peer-mentoring network. This helps make their transition into the university lifestyle easier and more seamless. 
 
By making resources such as tutoring, curriculum support, and access to student activities transparent and easily accessible, students are less stressed, better informed and can overall enjoy the entire university experience more. 
 
Additional features that can be provided by a mentor, such as an interactive campus map with pins that identify the classes that each student is assigned to, peer suggestions for students with like-minded interest, time-management tools, and a real-time student activities calendar all help students be more comfortable, encourage engagement and activity on campus, and more importantly, let them feel like they belong. 

Pharos

UI + Design Research
Sign Up
 
Users are prompted to sign up or sign in. For those signing up for the first time, they are welcomed and notified that the next screens are to help match them to a compatible mentor.
Compatibility
Users will be asked to answer personal questions about where they’re from, where they going, what they want to learn from their mentor, etc. in order to find someone that they are compatible with. The mentor might be a previous transfer from the same college, from the same hometown, or in the same major as the user.
Mentor Matching

Based on the user’s responses, the user will be recommended mentors that they may be compatible with. The user can view each mentor’s profile and choose to request one. The user can always change mentors later.
Messaging
 
Once the user requests a mentor, the app will open to its ‘home’ page, the messages tab. There will be a contact for the requested mentor and an indication that their acceptance is pending. The user can still message the mentor at this time. Once the pending mark is gone, the mentor has officially accepted the user as a mentee. The user can later add or delete mentors, as well as view the mentor’s profile page. 
Goals
 
The user can choose from various categories to view goals or challenges relating to the specific category. They are challenged to complete these goals as a way of encouraging social engagement and engagement with their environment. The user can view a description and set a time frame for each task. The tasks are viewable by swiping.
Blog
 
The user can browse through articles written by mentors to become more educated about various topics, get advice, get encouragement, and read about mentors experiences. 
Prompts
 
Users can choose from various prompts to write about to put their thoughts about their goals, motivation, habits, etc. on paper. Answering prompts helps the mentor understand what the user’s immediate goals are and helps to monitor their overall level of engagement and motivation.