On Tuesday 27th June, the Westminster Business School held it’s e-mentor awards ceremony, celebrating 3rd year students who have given up their time to mentor new students. As part of this event, we wanted to speak to several mentors at the event in an interview series to find out what motivates them. First up is BA Business Management student, Gabriel Fahm.
Tell us about yourself…
My name is Gabriel Fahm and I’m a Londoner of Nigerian and Guyanese descent. I’m on the BA Business Management course with Japanese and I’m blessed to have just graduated with a First with Honours.
How did you find out about the e-mentoring scheme?
In my first year at UoW I was an ‘e-mentee’ myself so I already knew this program existed, then in my second year of studies I took part in the Career Development Centre and the National Mentoring Consortium’s co-hosted Ethnic Minority Undergraduate Scheme (EMUS) which paired me up with a mentor from HMRC for a year. This further exposed me to the types of extra-curricular things the University had to offer.
What made you sign up to it?
I decided in my final year that I would give back knowledge, since I had received so much of it. Also, like anyone else on the scheme, I wanted to stand out from my peers in any way I could, and because I didn’t work part-time I had a lot of free time.
What was your highlight during your mentoring?
When my e-mentee asked me about pathways she seemed very stressed, so I gave her some advice my dad gave to me. That is, to not worry too much about the future as there is little we can do to control it. I told my e-mentee that she should go with her forte and her gut regarding a pathway to choose. Perhaps I was not the best person to ask since I stayed on the General pathway but I could still relate to her worries and it seemed to help her choose based on which she excelled in.
Why do you think students should become an e-mentor?
I think it helps develop leadership skills and gets students accustomed to roles of responsibility – we are on the Business Management course after all. Also, like I said earlier, anything to help stand out goes a long way. Furthermore, I’m a strong believer of karma, so if you were an e-mentee in your first year I think it’s nice to let things come around full-circle.
What are your plans after you graduate?
I have no official wage-paying work experience; all my work experience consists of voluntary/unpaid work. Despite this, I was blessed enough to get a well-paying job before I even graduated teaching English in Japan. I think I obtained this job because my CV is full of extra-curricular activities at UoW and outside.
Can you part any last mentor wisdom to any new students reading this?
I would urge students to strongly consider the e-mentoring scheme and many other schemes the university has on offer, as it will make the difference. I would also urge students to take up a second language while you’re here at UoW. It’s free and it adds flavour to your degree. Finally, whenever an opportunity comes along, even if it’s unpaid, be the first one in the room to say yes, because if it can go on your CV it’s worth doing.
Many thanks to Gabriel for taking the time out to take part in this interview. If you are interested in becoming a mentor or would like to find out more, then visit the Career Development Centre. You can also find out more about Gabriel’s course in BA Business Management.
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