So you are a law student, one could assume (rightly or wrongly) that you are known to ‘bend the odd ear’ about how hard your degree is, how your job prospects are slim and how you have no time to socialise. You may have even dropped the odd “you wouldn’t understand, your degree isn’t like law.” The problem is your employability skills are not what they could be. I’m here to give you a solution. A solution that will help improve your studies, give you more free time and enhance your employability.
In exchange for 5 hours a week, you could become a young people’s mentor. What an audacious comment I here you mutter, am I not reflecting the painstakingly busy life of a law student? Yes, but read on.
I can confidently say that embarking on a mentoring program was the best move I made during my first year, and yes, I too am a law student. In this short blog, I’ll explain what I perceived to be the biggest benefits of mentoring.
Firstly, my time management greatly improved. An old proverb states, “If you want something done, ask a busy person.” I had a set time to see my mentees. If I was late, the session was off, as students had lessons to attend. Planning my time in advance was therefore crucial. Vaguely designating a week to my coursework research was no longer an option, it now had to be between 4-6pm every Wednesday or Friday or not at all. My mentoring had given me other commitments to contend with.
Think About Others
Mentoring also gives an incredible insight in to the lives and perspectives of others. In a society becoming more diverse, having the ability to communicate with people from different social classes and cultures is all the more important, especially important for prospective lawyers.
Finally, as law becomes an ever more competitive area, it is imperative that a prospective legal professional attains as much wider experience and in turn employability attributes as possible. There are few better ways of demonstrating the rhetorical ‘I have excellent interpersonal skills and commitment’ on your CV, than by proclaiming that every week you carried out hour long one-to-one mentoring sessions with five very different mentees.
You can derive a great amount of motivation by seeing the efforts of your mentees. Furthermore, mentoring is no longer a hard area to get into, with opportunities increasing. The benefits of mentoring are endless, with this blog illustrating the mere tip of the iceberg. If you have a genuine altruistic nature and passion in helping others, deciding to become a mentor could be one of the best decisions you make.
© Christian Weaver, 2013
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