Thursday, February 13 was an evening dedicated to one of New College’s longest running traditions – mentorship. On this evening, at the 2020 Career Mentorship Reception, New College students who are participating in this year’s Career Mentorship Program had the exciting opportunity to meet their new mentors. For many, this was the first opportunity to spend time with their mentors in person and begin conversations meant to help them find their way through important decisions about next career steps. For all who attended, both mentors and mentees past and present, it was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate a mentorship program that is one of U of T’s longest running and most successful.
As an institution deeply committed to student success, New College seeks to provide students with all possible tools to think critically and clearly, to engage with their community both inside and outside university, and to understand the important role of leadership and giving back. It is through this preparation, of which this mentorship program is a key piece, that students start on the path of becoming the next generation of professionals and leaders. The transition from student to working professional is a time of both excitement and uncertainty. For students, having the opportunity to spend time and learn from someone who has already walked this path is incredibly helpful. It is a meaningful opportunity to learn and prepare for life after graduation. This program strives to create an experience that benefits both parties as they embark on a journey of respect and mutual discovery – student mentees as they gain invaluable professional guidance, and mentors who have a chance to gain new perspectives and reflect on the path they have taken as professionals.
The agenda for the evening including not only looking forward to the new bonds and connections being formed, but looking back at some of the people who have aided in the program’s long term success. This year, we celebrated Jesslyn Mauriera, 1998 graduate of New College and a 2003 graduate of the Faculty Law, who was a mentee in the program when she was a student and has been a mentor since 2006. One of her past mentees, Nathalie Forde-Soso, presented Maurier a plaque and reflected on the impact that both Maurier and the mentorship program had on her career path. As well, New College Alumni Ambassador Chan Leung introduced some new and returning mentors, as well as his mentor, Paul Lindblad who is still part of the mentorship program. Finally, the evening’s host, New College Principal Bonnie McElhinny, reflected on the importance of mentorship, recalling the difference it has made in her career, and encouraged students to take advantage of spending time with people who have achieved professional satisfaction and success. We look forward to hearing more about the success as of these new connections at future events, as the ongoing cycle of mentee and mentor continues to grow and evolve.
If you are interested in learning more about the Career Mentorship Program or other opportunities for mentorship, please click here.