As a Lead Peer Mentor, Vishnupriya not only supports new students arriving in her department, but also supports other mentors to support their mentees. Here, she discusses her time as a Lead Peer Mentor.

"It was gratifying to see the positive difference I was making in a first-year student’s experience especially when it’s their first time in university."

- Vishnupriya, BSc (hons) Management

Why did you want to get involved with the mentoring scheme?

I had a very positive experience with my peer mentor in my first year. It was extremely reassuring to know that I had someone to turn to for support and I wanted to provide the same reassurance to another first-year student. This motivated me to apply for Lead Peer Mentor as I could also ensure that all first years got this support rather than just my mentees.

What does being a lead peer mentor involve?

As Lead Peer Mentors, we assigned peer mentors to first year students over the summer. We are also responsible for conducting sessions for first years such as exam preparation and unit choice as well as gathering feedback of the scheme in our suite.

What has been the most positive aspect of the role?

The satisfaction of helping a first year and seeing their relief! As a peer mentor, it was gratifying to see the positive difference I was making in a first-year student’s experience especially when it’s their first time in university. In addition, the first meet-up in Fresher’s Week was a huge success and it was really rewarding seeing everyone have a good time with their mentors. We got a lot of positive feedback about our matching and it felt like our efforts over the summer paid off!

What has surprised you about the scheme?

I thought being a Lead Peer Mentor would be a huge time commitment. However, I was pleasantly surprised that it was quite flexible and not as demanding as I had expected both in terms of time and responsibilities. I had a lot of fun planning sessions and giving talks and got to make new friends!

How will being a lead peer mentor help you for the future?

As lead peer mentor I developed my leadership, organisational and planning skills. I have become better at interacting with people and I believe the experience has increased my skills portfolio and made me more employable.

Which three words/phrases would best sum up being a lead peer mentor?

Exciting experience, new friends and rewarding!