Leader able to effect change
Developing students as leaders through Peer Support
Peer Support presents the opportunity for students across all years to engage with their subject discipline and their college. Drawing upon their own experiences in their first year, peer mentors are able to provide students in the lower years with guidance and useful information to support their engagement with university life and academic study. The programme provides both the peer mentors and mentees an additional opportunity to engage with each other and with their course material in new ways. Peer leaders are able to develop their leadership skills and improve adaptability, in terms of understanding other people.
Students who volunteer as Peer Leaders can use their experience to contribute towards the Exeter Award, providing an excellent opportunity for the mentors to enhance their CV. The skills developed by the Peer Leaders innately link back to employability, and the students' development of these skills, from time management, to the planning and delivery of sessions, has a great impact on the success of the scheme.
As Amanda illustrates: “… If you’ve got the right types of leaders, who are committed and enthusiastic, it makes such a huge difference to the success of those programmes and to how much the students get out of it… It is the same with staff; if you go into a lecture and have a really enthusiastic academic giving a lecture, then you get enthusiasm from the students…[so] it’s the same process with peer leaders”.
"Employers have been very interested to understand and to hear about... peer mentors."