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Family & Relationships

Three Steps to Becoming a Mentor

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If you’re looking for a rewarding way to give back or share your life experiences, here are three simple steps to get started as a mentor:

Find a mentee

College students often seek career guidance from the career service offices at their schools. These offices keep lists of alumni, many of whom are successful in various fields. If you're not already on such a list, call your alma mater and sign up to get paired with a student. You can also attend networking events for your profession to attract a mentee who already has some experience in your industry.

To mentor children and teens, you can contact schools or mentorship organizations such as Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Commit to a short time investment initially

Mentoring doesn't have to occupy a lot of your time. Coaching can take less than an hour a week, but it can make a world of difference to a mentee. Mentorship of a younger professional or a college student can start with a 30-minute meeting or a 15-minute phone call. Mentorship of a child can take as little as an hour per week.

Decide whether you want to continue mentorship

The mentor/mentee relationship functions much the same as any other friendship. You start off with a quick meeting, get to know one another, and then gradually discover how you can coach/be coached in the future. Big Brothers Big Sisters may require a 12-month commitment, but you can change mentees if the relationship isn't a good fit.

Remember, everyone has something they can teach someone else. You may be mentoring about your career, or just showing your mentee how to be a compassionate person who volunteers when he or she grows up.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
Big Brothers Big Sisters


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