What's a mentor?

Mentoring is a relationship which enables and aims to encourage learning and provides a framework within which individuals can promote career and personal development. The role of the mentor is to provide support, advice and feedback and to share knowledge and experience. The mentor should be a confidante, with the mentoring relationship providing a space to explore issues and talk about concerns in a safe and confidential environment..

Why should I want a mentor?

Having a mentor gives you an opportunity to talk through any aspect of your degree and career which you would like to improve upon and draw on their experience to help you solve problems and plan your own development. It should help you to clarify your goals and will give you an opportunity to try out new ideas. The role of the mentor is to give honest feedback which will help you to have a better understanding of your strengths and weaknesses..

What kind things can I talk to them about?

Anything that concerns you about your degree or your career development. Your relationship with your mentor is confidential - if they think that they need help in helping you, then they will ask your permission before they talk about your issues to someone else. Your mentor should encourage, challenge, nurture and teach in response to your needs. However, do bear in mind that your mentor is not a therapist. We will expect you both to set parameters at the start of your relationship about what are, and what are not, suitable topics for discussion..

How much time will it take?

We would expect you and mentor to meet up once a month, for around six months. You can meet face to face, Skype or over the phone, but we recommend that your first meeting at least is face to face. How long you meet for is up to the two of you. When you meet for the first time we’d expect you to set some guidelines about when, where, how often and for how long you might meet. .

What if I don’t get on with my mentor?

Then let us know. It is important that both you and your mentor feel comfortable with the relationship. If you don’t, then it is not going to help either of you. We’ll look at why that relationship didn’t work and then try to match you with someone who will be more suited to you..

What benefits can I expect?

improved self-confidence clarification of own career goals chance to try out ideas in safe environment will receive honest feedback improved morale and motivation better understanding of own strengths and weaknesses .