The first activity took place the 23rd of September during the Introweek for IBM 2016. On this day the mentees, Isis, Thu and myself, found out that our mentors were 2nd year IBM students Elvira and Damieta.
The activity took place the whole day and it consisted of doing a city walk around Ghent while having to complete some tasks spread out around the city centre and fill out a quiz before going back to campus.
I didn’t know the city that well at all, or other people from IBM, so I enjoyed spending the day exploring Ghent, stopping by to try some Belgian waffles and generally being in good company.
The second activity took place the 15th of November of 2016, and it was our first ‘peer tutoring’ session. Everyone was present, we all met up at the cafeteria after class to ask some questions we had about our course to our mentors and about the upcoming exams. Damieta recommended us to use online flashcards to help us study definitions for course like Law. I also asked Elvira questions about German since she speaks Spanish like me and she has taught other Spanish speakers German before so she could give me some tips and answer questions I had. Overall, it was a very useful activity for me, my mentors answered a lot of doubts I had, although for some courses, our mentors had other teachers last year so they told us that the topics could be a bit different and they couldn’t exactly advise us that much unfortunately.
Activity #3 was a Cultural activity. We all decided together on going to a local museum in Ghent called “Het Huis Van Alijn” on the 17th of December 2016. I think all of us enjoyed this particular activity a lot.
The museum had a fun game in which we had to look for clues to find out who murdered a child, as the museum is about daily life in the 1900s in Ghent, that was the time the murder was set in. It was entertaining for everyone to look for clues and complete the tasks, and we were all a bit creeped out by the setting, but we all had a good laugh and had fun nonetheless. The second part of the museum was set on the daily life throughout the years which was very interesting to see as well.
Fourth and Fifth Activity
We met on the 7th of May 2017 to do 2 activities: a peer tutoring session, and then, a leisure activity. We decided to first have lunch together and do the peer tutoring then and take the time to ask questions about the June exams to our mentors. Damieta explained how the exam was for each course in which she had the same teacher we have now, which type of exam questions there were (multiple choice questions, open questions, etc), what to focus on studying for Accounting (more theory, since exercises were done throughout the semester already), tips for studying Business Economics, amongst other things. She also told us more about the 3rd year semester abroad and how it works, how she chose her country and also gave us tips, which i found all very helpful to know. After lunch, our leisure activity was to do a bit of shopping in Langemunt street by the city center. It was a fun activity, we all took it as an opportunity to catch up, since we hadn’t met up for a long while.
After all the activities…
After all the activites we have done so far with my mentors, i think the one i benefited from the most academically speaking were both peer tutoring sessions. They helped me get answers to some questions i had that not much people from my class knew the answers to, since they were in the same position as I was. It was so helpful to have 2 very friendly people who have already been in my shoes and can give me tips and tricks on how to deal with the IBM courses, exams and student life in general.
I didn’t find it difficult to be a mentee at all, I was really lucky to have mentors and fellow mentees who were very friendly and easy to talk to, I never had any problems with any of them and now they are all close friends. The mentors were always more than happy to answer all of our questions as best as they could. As a mentor myself, I don’t think I would have done anything differently than what my mentors did. From the mentorship project I think that what I have learnt the most is teamwork (1st and 3rd activities were ALL about it!), and for that I think we have all gotten closer throughout all the many activities we have done and I am definitely glad for that.