Mentoring: A Bridge to Academic Excellence
Several strategies and ideas have been coined or used in pursuit of helping students achieve excellence in their academics. These strategies or ideas include scholarships, tutoring, internships, and mentoring. I believe the most valuable of them all is mentoring. In my opinion mentoring is the bridge to academic success and I am privileged to be paired with a mentor through Pearson, Ramona Elmer.
Last year I was honored to have been awarded the Pearson Scholarship. Along with the financial award, each Pearson Scholar is matched with a mentor. Initially I didn’t value the mentoring as much as I did the financial aspect of the scholarship. I was concerned about paying my tuition and other academic expenditures. I did not know what mentoring was or what good could come out of it. Now, I can confidently say that the mentoring component is as important as the financial component of the scholarship.
Communication is one of the key components of mentoring that has helped improve my academic performance. My mentor and I got off to a good start with communication. During the early days of the program we exchanged emails. Sometimes we communicate via phone calls. At other times, my mentor and I would meet in person and discuss academics and personal issues. Setting up meetings wasn’t always easy. She had to drive for almost an hour and sometimes because of my work and tight schedules, arranging meeting times was hard, but my mentor was willing to work with my schedule.
Words cannot describe how the immense support from my mentor has contributed to my educational success. Just to mention a few, my mentor, Ramona, ensures that I have the required study materials for the upcoming semester. She also helps me with information about securing scholarships for my education. She provides encouragement to me when the semester gets tough. This was helpful during my final semester in my community college when I had to deal with the transfer process, classes, work and my personal life issues. She played a key role in my transition to my four-year school and personally drove me to school and made sure I got a good start.
Ramona’s dedication of her time and resources to my overall well-being and academic success is something that I really appreciate about her. I am the only member of my family here in United States. Being so far away from my family is challenging, but I also find great significance in having an individual to turn to for advice. Having someone who cares about you in all endeavors keeps you motivated and allows you to be proud in your academic performance. That is why I believe mentoring is the bridge to achieving academic excellence.