Nazish Qizilbash participated as a mentee in TRIEC Mentoring Partnership through Sheridan College. Nazish shares her mentoring experience and the transition from a mentee to a mentor.

What motivated you to become a mentor? 

My motivation to become a mentor was based on my own experience as a mentee in the TRIEC Mentoring program. The guidance and support that I received from my mentor when I was settling in Canada had a very positive impact on me. It gave me confidence and I felt less intimidated to adapt to the Canadian work culture. My mentor helped me make the transition easier and gave some insightful tips for my field. When I got the opportunity to be a mentor, I felt the only way I could pay it back was by paying it forward.

What would be your top tip for a new volunteer mentor? 

My top tip for a new volunteer mentor would be to try to put yourself in the mentee’s shoes by asking a lot of questions. Get to know your mentee and learn about their work, lifestyle and culture they are coming from so you can guide them appropriately to adapt to the work culture in Canada which is new and at times overwhelming for them.

What has been your top aha mentoring moment? 

My top aha moment while mentoring was when I realized my mentee is looking for someone who can just understand their situation. When I could empathize with the position my mentee was in and share my own experiences, mishaps and cultural shocks that I faced when I was settling in as a newcomer, my mentee found that most comforting and gave her the confidence to face the challenges that lay ahead of her.

How has becoming a mentor helped you succeed in your own career? 

Mentoring was a valuable way for me to further develop my leadership and communication skills and gain confidence. It also gave me insights into exploring alternative solutions to creating more effective processes in my own field of work.

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