Preparing for your future, Student Mentors, Student Stories, Supporting your study

Congratulations to our Student Mentors!

Academic Study Skills Manager, Ann, tells us all about the celebration of our Student Mentors and Mentor Consultants and how you can get involved with the scheme before 8 May 2018.

CONGRATULATIONS to this year’s cohort of Student Mentors and Mentor Consultants!

On Thursday 22 March we held an event to reward Cardiff University Student Mentors for their dedication to the first year experience, to thank them for volunteering as mentors and to celebrate their success.

You can still apply to become a mentor before 8 May 2018.

Find out more and apply here

Students and staff come together

Opened by Ben Lewis, Head of Student Support and Wellbeing, and officiated by Professor Amanda Coffey, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Student Experience and Academic Standards, the event welcomed over 200 guests.

Students from eleven academic schools came together to receive certificates and trophies for the hard work and commitment they have demonstrated to the Mentor Scheme this year.

 

Celebrating the experience

Amr Alwishah, a final year student from the School of Engineering, has been a Mentor and a Mentor Consultant and spoke of the impact the Mentor Scheme had on him as a mentee and as a mentor. Amr attributes his involvement with the scheme as being the catalyst that inspired him to get involved in co-curricula opportunities in the University. Next year, Amr will take up post as the VP for Welfare and Campaigns; we wish him every success in this new role.

Last year, Kalika Puri from the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Science was the overall winner, achieving Mentor of the Year 2017. As a final year student she spoke about her time as a mentee and mentor and how it had enriched her student experience. In her speech, Kalika had this to say:

“…Connecting with people is one of the best and most important things you can do with your life, and giving your time to help out first years or mentors makes both you and them better in the long run…When I step into the world of work I really hope that I’ll be surrounded by people who are like all of you; people who care about helping each other learn from mistakes, people who are there to talk to when life inevitably feels a bit tough and it seems like the whole world is refusing to laugh at our jokes. There are so many things you can take away from being a mentor and mentor consultant, but if I might suggest three, they would be, that you remember how good it feels to be there for people, don’t be afraid to seek out your own mentors when you graduate and start work, and if anyone ever asks you to be their mentor and you have the time and experience, say yes!”

We also had the pleasure of welcoming back Ms Imogen Danks, this year’s Mentor Alumni. Imogen was an incredibly engaged Mentor and Mentor Consultant for the School of Computer Science and Informatics. Imogen spoke about the skills she gained through her involvement with the scheme and how she is still applying those skills as a graduate employee.

“…I gained so many skills through my time as a student mentor and mentor consultant, that I now use every day – but I’m going to highlight three of that have impacted on me the most; one, confidence…two, preparation in advance…and three, mentoring yourself. The thing I’ve learned is to sit down, imagine it was your mentee coming to you with your own problem, and then give advice…to yourself! It’s one skill that I couldn’t have learnt anywhere else… I really hope you enjoyed yourself as a mentor. I definitely did, and it was by far one of the hardest things to leave behind when I graduated.”

Outstanding contributions recognised

The evening also saw the Student Mentor of the Year for each school revealed and awarded. Well done to the following for your outstanding contribution to the scheme:

  • Dentistry – Emyr Meek
  • Ancient History – Constance Wells
  • Business – Stavroula Briseniou
  • Engineering – Nikolaos Pantelias
  • Social Sciences – Alice Hang Yuen Shing
  • Computer Sciences – John Bennett
  • Pharmacy – Samuel Watkins
  • Physics – Sebastian Gould-Williams
  • Mathematics – Orla Tarn
  • English Language – Lucy Ghent

And an extra special congratulations to the winners of our two most prestigious awards:

  • Outstanding Contribution to the Student Mentor Scheme 2018 – Reeya Patani
  • Student Mentor Consultant of the Year 2018 – Emily Radcliffe

What is the Mentor Scheme?

Cardiff University’s Mentor Scheme recruits continuing undergraduate students to mentor small groups of first year students. Our Student Mentors help new students with creating communities within their schools and across the University. The scheme’s success is all thanks to the commitment of our mentors, who put in the time and effort to help ease the transition to university life for first year students. They are on hand to help with all those queries and questions first years often have but do not know who to ask.

Mentor Consultants provide guidance for Student Mentors on the mentoring process and are on hand to help with any issues.

Applications to the scheme close on 8 May, so there’s still time to get involved next year.

Find out more here

“I want to be a mentor because my own mentor has been my hero. I want to give back and designate my own time and effort to help future first year students. University is a scary thing at first, but having someone who understands helps so much” – 2018 Mentee Survey Response

 

The scheme is growing!

This year over 300 students from across the University have received certificates and trophies for their voluntary work on the scheme. It has certainly grown monumentally since its humble beginnings of 40 students on its pilot scheme! This not only reflects its popularity, but the generosity and capacity for Cardiff University students to volunteer and contribute to our University community.

In her speech, Professor Coffey paid tribute to all of those students who have enriched the student experience in their role as mentor and mentor consultant and acknowledged the legacy that this group of students has created.

The scheme is set to grow even more and Professor Coffey thanked those present for their contribution in ensuring that the mentor scheme will expand to 20 schools next year, with further expansion scheduled for the following year.

Mentors have a positive impact

When surveyed about the impact of the scheme this was what one of the first year students said:

“It has really helped me settle into university life. The new way of living/studying was overwhelming at first and the mentoring scheme made it a lot easier. It has definitely enabled my work to be as good as possible.” – 2018 Mentee Survey Response

“I want to be a mentor because my own mentor has been my hero. I want to give back and designate my own time and effort to help future first year students. University is a scary thing at first, but having someone who understands helps so much” – 2018 Mentee Survey Response

 

Mentors love it too

The Mentors too get a lot out of the scheme. Two students from the School of History, Archaeology and Religion, discussed the mentor experience:

“Ever since taking part in the student mentoring scheme as a mentee in year one, we knew that it was something we would want to get involved in. Everyone knows how daunting while exciting first year can be and to be able to help someone through that process is really rewarding. It is a great way to meet new people, especially if you combine your meetings with another mentor as you can share ideas and resources. It also means your mentees meet more people from their course! You can also find out a great deal more about the University itself. There are loads of resources and help available to prepare your sessions – you will never run out of things to discuss! The whole scheme has really improved our skills, such as confidence and responsibility, not to mention that it is a great thing to put on your CV. We both cannot recommend this scheme enough to any student.”

Emily Radcliffe and Alicja Opiela, SHARE.

 

A final thank you

The Celebration Event is about the student mentors and recognises them, their enrichment of the student experience and their ability to make a positive impact on first year transition. A big thank you to you all.

“A big thank-you for the mentor scheme! Was a great help in transitioning into uni” – 2018 Mentee Survey Response

 

See what being a Student Mentor is all about

 

Your feedback and help please

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Best wishes, 

Ann, Academic Study Skills Manager, and the Mentoring Team.

Your Student Life, Supported.

The Student Support Centre has a range of services dedicated to helping students make the most of their time at University, including: Advice and MoneyCareers and EmployabilityCounselling, Health and Wellbeing, Disability and Dyslexia and International Student Support. The Student Support Centres are located at 50 Park Place, Cathays Campus and Cardigan House, Heath Park Campus.

For further details of services, events, opening times and more find us on the University Intranet.

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