I am a 4th year LLB with English Law student here at the University of Aberdeen and I have been an S4S Mentor for two years now. I’ve really enjoyed giving first years my perspective, advice on settling into Uni life and some tips I’ve learned throughout my time at the University. I remember being quite nervous in my first year and I would have appreciated hearing other students’ experiences – this would have easily eased my nerves a bit!
So, what is it like being a student mentor?
If you’re concerned about the programme taking too much of your time – don’t be. Being a mentor hasn’t really taken up much of mine. You may think that it’s quite overwhelming at first or that you need specific experiences in acting as a mentor – but don’t worry, it’s actually a really good experience!I received proper training for the role that will also be beneficial for the rest of my academic and workplace careers. Safe to say – I feel supported as a mentor and as such, I can better support my mentees.
You can also help shaping the mentor programme – there are several meetings and focus groups which give me the opportunity to share my opinion to help improve the programme going forward. I really appreciate the fact that my voice is being heard. You also get to meet loads of nice people throughout the programme which is a lot of fun.
And last but not least - I have also taken part in the STAR award, meaning my role as mentor will be noted on my enhanced transcript – which looks great on my CV. Being part of this programme is honestly a win for everyone being involved. This may sound trivial, but I used to get really nervous before sending emails, especially to numerous people and now, I don’t. Being a mentor has helped improve my confidence!
My top three tips for you
- Reach out to mentees at least once a month;
- Let your mentees know how to best contact you;
- Ask specific questions about their experiences, for example how an essay submission went or how they found their first tutorials.
Generally, give them the feeling that you care and that they are not alone with their struggles – in the end, we have all been there!