A college mentor is someone with the background and desire to guide a student in preparing for his years beyond college. Students who are highly motivated to excel and go beyond the minimum requirements of college study seek out a mentor so that they can benefit from the resources and advice a college mentor can offer.
Most colleges assign students to an advisor who assists the student in scheduling required courses for his major course of study as well as minor concentrations. The college mentor goes above and beyond this responsibility in an unofficial manner. The best time to look for a college mentor is during your second year of college. By this time, you should be firmly entrenched in your major course of study. Most likely, you are also looking toward your future and deciding whether you are going to continue your education with graduate school or you are going to look for a job in your field once you graduate.
Your college mentor can assist you with either task. It’s important to find a college mentor by the time that you are in the beginning of your third year of college so that you can map out a course of action that takes you toward your goals If you wait too long to find someone to guide you in your educational path, you may miss out on future opportunities to excel. Acceptance into graduate school is more likely if you have research experience to include on your resume. Your college mentor can guide you to the right locations and opportunities to develop relevant research topics.
Additionally, acceptance into graduate school is more likely when the applicant has published research material in a scholarly publication, another task that your mentor is likely to encourage.
How to Find a College Mentor
The best way to find a college mentor is to actively look for one on your own. You should select a professor who teaches within your major course of study as a mentor. In most cases, you are going to need to approach the professor on your own with the request for his assistance. Your college mentor should be someone you respect and admire.
Ideally, you should select a professor whose interests are similar to your interests, as he will have access to a greater number of resources that may be of help to achieving your goals. Moreover, if you align yourself with a college professor whose academic interest is similar to your interest, you may receive an offer to join the professor’s current research project.
No matter what path you intend to take after college, you may be able to improve the likelihood of achieving your goals if you find a mentor who takes you under his wing. The best teacher is experience and an experienced professor has a lot to offer students by way of guidance as a college mentor.
If you’re thinking of attending college or are doing it already, it might be a good investment to find a college mentor to guide you through and help you with your tasks – it definitely makes a lot of things easier and better!