HOLYOKE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - It's Wednesday afternoon around 2 o'clock.

Gabrielle Fernandez, Finn Lubold, and Kendrick Williams are heading to the classroom as part of a new mentorship program at Holyoke High School.

"This has helped me stay organized," Williams tells us. "I can write down my assignments and, when I get home, I can just go and check it."

"It translates on the football field," says Finn. "With keeping the kids on the field instead of falling off."

Assistant coach and defensive coordinator Mark Lublod created the program after attending football camps at a college in New Hampshire.

"A lot of programs have mandatory study halls, and," said Coach Lubold. "They were finding it wasn't working for them, so they switched to this idea of having planners given to their football players and having mentors so they can work through some of those issues."

If you're a junior or senior with a 3.0 GPA or higher, you can mentor younger student-athletes on the football team.

With a planner and designated time to study, it's helping students see their academics differently.

"Just to focus and don't play around in class," stated Fernandez. "It's really important. It can affect you in the future too."

"I like that it brings everyone together," continued Finn. "It makes sure everyone is going to get good grades. The group leaders make sure everyone is on task."

Coach Lubold tells Western Mass News it's another way the younger students can feel supported and have a fellow student to help them along the way.

"Make that transition easier through organization, because," said Coach Lubold. "As l tell the kids, and I'm the biggest culprit, the biggest lie we tell ourselves is, I will remember so this will help them keep things organized, remember assignments, know when they have tests, [and] know when they have games."

Coach Lubold says the program has already been extremely successful, and he hopes it will continue into next school year, keeping Holyoke on the forefront of academics.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation).  All rights reserved.

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