My first-year mentee, Lyndsie Leipold, is from Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. She is majoring in Biology on the Pre-Vet track. Lyndsie had wanted to come to Ohio State since she was young. When she visited Mount Union after visiting OSU, she confirmed OSU was her favorite school.
I think Lyndsie and I have a lot in common. We both love dogs, donuts, adventuring, working out, and volunteering. She formed a great friend group through living on 5th floor in Smith-Steeb, just like I did last year. I found we are both intrigued by the prospect of ghosts. Lyndsie made a short film with her friends having to do with her haunted dorm room. I went to Savannah over spring break, and my mom and I went on a ghost tour. I was sure that some of my pictures captured paranormal figures and faces. Next year, Lyndsie might go to the Mansfield Reformatory during Halloween. Another thing we have in common is getting lost when using the Columbus bus system. I have ended up in the middle of nowhere a couple of times, and Lyndsie has as well. This happened to each of us during snow flurries before, but instead of getting discouraged, I think we both looked at it like an adventure.
The differences between Lyndsie and me include what we are involved in. In addition, Lyndsie has a knack for science. She has taken many science courses, some in the same semester, that I do not think I would have been able to pass. My strengths are more math oriented. I learned that Lyndsie has a real passion for helping animals and is planning to be a vet. I love animals, too, but I could never be a veterinarian because I have so many allergies.
Lyndsie grew from the first semester because she developed her friendships further. She also grew in the second semester because she finally found a volunteer group that she enjoys serving with. This was very important to Lyndsie and her sense of self because she had always done a lot of volunteering in high school. I hope that she will continue to work with this group and find ways to lead in the future. Next, I think Lyndsie’s dog helped her through the stress of second semester. Being around Cooper is extremely relaxing, and I can see why Lyndsie decided to have him live with her at OSU. Lyndsie and Cooper brought joy to her classmates, and even brightened up the days of people she did not know at all.
In mentoring Lyndsie, I may have helped her with socialization and orientation. I tried to give her some campus involvement ideas and tips about good places to adventure. I also wanted to keep her updated on volunteering events that she could participate in to get her service hours completed. When we had conversations, I strove to be a respectful and considerate listener. We had fun on our explorations in Columbus, and these occasions hopefully gave Lyndsie an idea of what kinds of exciting opportunities this city has to offer. Whenever we both signed up to go to the same ACES event, we could count on each other to attend and be there if we needed someone to sit next to.
There are many benefits of a mentoring program. One benefit is getting to know a younger or older ACES member on a deeper level. Presently, there is not much motivation to meet ACES members from a different year. The first-year ACES bonded over living together and being in the same scholars lectures. The second-year ACES already bonded the year before and still remain close, so meeting first-years does not seem like a priority. The mentor program helps break down the barrier between first and second-year ACES. Moreover, another benefit of the mentoring program is that second-years have the opportunity to take on a bit more responsibility. They must learn to manage time wisely between their needs and the needs of their mentor. Communication skills grow as a result of the program, too. Working through busy schedules to find free times to meet means that mentors and mentees must follow up with each other often.
From being a second-year mentor, I learned about relating to others interests and finding common ground. I also learned how I could be a better mentor in future mentorships. I would have liked to involve my mentee in more activities and provide her with more resources for stress and time management. I developed as a leader through this program because I participated in self-reflection, face-to-face conversation, and guiding my mentee to certain involvements which suited her personality.