What is mentoring really like?
Though each mentoring story is different, they all are inspiring. The stories below detail how mentoring has a profound impact, not only on the mentees, but on the mentors as well.
Read testimonials and stories from a few individuals involved in the mentoring space about the impact quality training, technical assistance, and resources and support have had on their programming and mentoring relationships.
It wasn’t until I was well into my graduate education that I began to realize something had been missing from my educational experience. A mentor. I am a Black female PhD student, and I’ve learned a lot during this journey on what mentoring should look like.
When I was younger I assumed that only creative prodigies had mentors and they were somehow selected by way of the universe.
Alicia and Keyla are two years into their mentoring relationship and counting. The pair, who met in 2016, credit each other with the success they’ve found in their academic, professional, and personal lives. “The number one thing I’ve gotten out of our relationship is to never stop pushing yourself,” says mentee Keyla. She has taken this message to heart by challenging herself to reach new academic goals in her AP and Honors classes.
I’m excited to share with you all the story of just one of my mentors, LaMarr. I felt this was important for me to share this because so many times we think only young people need mentors, when the reality is that EVERYONE needs a mentor or mentors in their life. This is because people are messy and life is even messier!
I met LaMarr several years ago during an event in Baltimore where he spoke. I remember reaching out to him because not only did I feel his passion when he spoke, I also remember thinking to myself “this is a standup man that I can probably learn something from.” He not only responded to my first request to meet with him, he immediately took me under his wing and shared of himself the entire time.
Five years ago, newlyweds Brenda Fike and husband Scott Spector moved here to take over running her father-in-law’s Bay Imprint business in Easton. Not knowing many people at that time, Fike looked to become involved with something that suited her work schedule. When Talbot Mentor’s (TM) board member, Merrilie Ford walked into the store to order a TM banner, Fike learned about this small organization, similar to Big Brother/Big Sisters, that existed in her community.
Recalling her own childhood, Fike knew it ‘takes a village’ to raise a child and she recognized that this is where she could immerse her sense of community responsibility and compassion. As a former teacher and camp counselor, Fike was well-aware that some children could benefit from a little extra time with an adult and was drawn to the one-on-one relationship she could develop.
My story with mentorship and why you should create your own:
In life, what matters most is not what our obstacles are but how we see them, how we react to them, and how we keep our motivation.
In my life, right after graduating from one of the top engineering universities in my country – Morocco. I experienced multiple forms of rejection. I was rejected because I was unskilled, not a good fit, sometimes due to over qualification or simply just because I am a woman. I felt unsafe, paralyzed and horrified. I swiftly realised that higher education is not about getting a job. Then, I had only two choices, using this rejection as a catapult or simply giving up.
I love being a mentor and assisting where I can, I make sure I don’t overstep my boundaries when it comes to certain things. As a mentor, I try to meet my mentee where she is and allow her to be open with to me as she feels the need to because being a teenager is difficult sometimes.
My name is Quiana Jenkins and I am a passionate advocate for mentoring. Mentoring sets the foundation in someone’s life to have solid career direction and advice to assist with everyday life circumstances. I feel that its my duty to give back because when I was 16 someone willing took a chance on me and helped me to be a successful lady in this ever-changing world. I currently mentor for Girl Tyme Mentoring, a local Baltimore non-profit. I’ve learned a lot about myself related to time management, patience, and flexibility as my mentee is a middle school young lady. I’m truly thankful for the opportunity to give back and share my experiences
Aliyah reminds me a lot of my younger self. She’s a brilliant girl who doesn’t have any issue making good grades. So, at first glance, people think this young person isn’t the one who needs the mentor. But that couldn’t be more wrong.