by Adenrele Adewusi ’15
In her post, Amy Goldwasser’s gives excellent (and frank) advise for something young adults are frequently told to do: getting and keeping a mentor. In the fall, I had many conversations with upperclassmen, and many (if not all) of them encouraged me to form relationships with adults on campus, whether it be a professor, a Dean, or a staff. Essentially, get a mentor! However, finding a mentor is not a simple task.
Telling someone to “find a mentor” is similar to instructing someone to “find a significant other.” In my case, I knew I didn’t want to rush into a relationship. I wanted my mentor to be someone I would want to talk to often, and feel comfortable doing so. So I “dated around” in the hopes of finding that person i would feel comfortable opening up to. My potential mentors were nice, influential, intelligent people…but for some reason I felt awkward and uncomfortable. I became discouraged.
Oftentimes, the person we are looking for is standing directly in front of us. I was taking a very demanding and challenging class in the Winter that required me to frequently meet with my professor. Because he was the “red pen,” I did not think of him as a potential mentor, even though I liked him as a person. However, after my classmates and I turned in our final assignment, he told us he was willing to be a resource and encouraged us to keep in touch with him. I took the offer.
Before you begin your search, I suggest you first think about what you want from a mentor. Also, remember that you can have more than one! And then read this blog post.