As you will know, coming to University can be both exciting and daunting. Many new students will be living away from their parents for the first time and will find shared living with their peers a challenge; also managing money will be new to many students as will independent study. All of these changes can often make the start of University life a confusing and difficult time.

This is where your role as a peer mentor becomes invaluable. No one is in a better place to offer advice and support to students. Almost any student can be a peer mentor. Probably the most important qualities to have as a peer mentor are enthusiasm, patience and an interest in working with people.

Peer mentors receive general training on a range of issues with which they could be faced and there will always be someone available to help and support the mentors.

Undergraduate Peer Mentors

The Role

We recruit around 900 peer mentors each year. Peer mentors will be matched up to a small group of first years from their course or a similar course to support for the duration of their first year at university. Peer mentors should be in a position to share their experience and support and guide with the various aspects related to the transition to university.

Read the role description

Rhys' story Nefeli's story

Recruitment

Almost anyone can volunteer to be a peer mentor but generally peer mentors are second year students. However, if you are not in your second year and would like to volunteer don't let this stop you! In order to become a peer mentor, you just need to sign up to and attend one of our peer mentor training sessions. Before you do, we recommend you read the Role Description to familiarise yourself with what is expected of a peer mentor.

Training

Training of peer mentors and lead peer mentors for 2019-20 will take place between March and April 2019. The training will be 2 hours and will take place in your subject areas. If you are unable to attend the subject specific session email peersupport@bath.ac.uk who can recommend alternatives.

After you have completed your training, you will be able to apply to become a Lead Peer Mentor.

Sign up to your department's Peer Mentor Training Session

Lead Peer Mentors

Lead Peer Mentors

We recruit approximately 70 lead peer mentors each year, who are responsible for assisting with the overall coordination of the mentoring scheme and representing the mentoring scheme on their programme. Lead peer mentors will typically be involved with matching mentors and mentees, leading the mentor/mentee welcome events, organising activities throughout the year as well as regularly staying in touch with the departmental mentor coordinator and Peer Support team. Lead peer mentors will still have mentees and their duties are in addition to what is required as a peer mentor.

Read the role description

Sharanya's story Nele's story

 

Recruitment and Training

You can apply to become a lead peer mentor once you have completed the peer mentor training. To apply for this role you must complete an online application form which will be assessed by a panel including the Peer Support Team and a member of staff from your department. Successful applicants will be invited to the Lead Peer Mentor training, which this year will be taking place on Wednesday 10th April 2019.

Postgraduate Peer Mentors

The Role

Peer mentors will be matched up to a small group of new postgraduate students from their faculty to support during the first year of their course. Peer mentors should be in a position to share their experience and support and guide with the various aspects related to the transition to postgraduate study and life and work at the University of Bath.

Our current mentoring schemes only operate in the Faculties of Engineering and Design and Humanities and Social Sciences. If you are a doctoral student in another faculty and would like to volunteer your time as a mentor, speak to your supervisor or director of studies to see if there is a mentoring scheme operating in your faculty.

Read the MRes Peer Mentor role description Read the Doctoral Peer Mentor role description

Chao's story

Recruitment and Training

We recruit Postgraduate Peer Mentors over the summer ready for induction in September and October. We also recruit new mentors for doctoral students in December ready for students starting between January and June.

In order to become a Postgraduate Peer Mentor, you will need to attend one of our Postgraduate Peer Mentor Briefings, which take place in July, August, September and December. We will hold dedicated sessions for students mentoring MRes students in September.

Keep an eye on this section for updates on when training will take place.

Placement Peer Mentors

The Role

Duties of a placement peer mentor include:

  • Signposting support available to students (ie: Placement Officers, Careers, events etc)
  • Provide informal support on a variety of concerns from the application process to workplace etiquette
  • Attending a compulsory training session
  • Maintain regular contact with mentees, face-to-face and online

Mentors do not support with the writing of applications or replicate any of the support that already exists. They act as informal peer to peer support and are trained to signpost students where necessary.

Read the role description

Jasmin's story

Recruitment and Training

We recruit Placement Peer Mentors over the summer ready to support students preparing for placement from October each year. In order to become a Placement Peer Mentor, you will need to attend one of our Placement Peer Mentor Briefings, which take place in October.

Keep an eye on this section for updates on when training will take place.

Benefits

There are lots of benefits for you whilst volunteering as a peer mentor. These include:

  • Develops important transferable skills.
  • Helping others increases your own confidence.
  • Will help consolidate your own knowledge and understanding of your programme or placement and the University.
  • Good opportunity to meet new people, building strong personal and professional networks
  • It will look good on your CV. It will provide evidence that you are willing to take on responsibility.
  • Being a mentor counts towards the Doctoral Skills Programme for postgraduate students.
  • Access to the Student Leaders Hub in the Virgil Building to carry out your work.
  • You will receive training on listening and communication skills.
  • Your volunteering can contribute to The Bath Award which is included on your final degree transcript.
  • You will be invited to an end of year thank you celebration event.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much time do I have to dedicate to peer mentoring?

The mentor/mentee relationship will last for the whole academic year. We expect mentors to meet their mentees at least once more during their first semester. From there, you and your mentees can decide how to continue the mentor/mentee relationship. You may want to continue meeting regularly, stay in touch via email or social media, or a mixture of these.

Is it paid?

Peer mentoring is voluntary. However, there are plenty of other benefits of being a peer mentor, including being able to have your work accredited through the Bath Award.

How many mentees will I have?

We try to allocate mentors approximately 5 students to mentor. This does depend on how many mentors sign up and the number of first years starting the course each year.

Will my mentees be from my course?

Yes, or a similar one. Our mentor schemes are arranged so you mentor students who are studying a similar course so you can share your experience.

When will I know who my mentees are?

This varies across mentor schemes, however most mentors know before their mentees arrive on campus. We recommend that mentors email their mentees before coming to University where possible. Placement mentees choose their mentors and you will be contact during the year if someone wants you to be their mentor.

When will my first meeting be and how do I arrange it?

For undergraduate mentors, your first meeting is arranged for you. Each department organises a welcome event at the start of the year, which mentors are expected to attend and meet their mentees. This is a good opportunity to introduce yourself and find out about your mentees.

For other schemes, you may be invited to a similar event during induction to meet your mentees. You can also invite mentees to meet you during your initial communications.

What happens next?

Arrange to meet up with your mentees throughout the year and support them through email or social media, whatever works for you and your mentees.

Where should we meet?

Most people meet up in a café on campus or somewhere in the department. Make sure you meet in a public place at first until you get to know your mentees.

How many times will we meet?

It’s up to you. It’s good to have meetings with your mentees in a group if you can arrange it, or even to meet up with another mentor and their mentees. That way, the new students get more opportunities to meet others on their course.

Am I expected to become a real friend for my mentees?

No. The mentor-mentee relationship is a semi-professional one. You might not get on that well on a personal basis but can still maintain the mentoring role. However, many mentor-mentee pairings have led to firm enduring friendships being made.

Still got questions? Get in touch!