Mentoring first year study groups - benefits from the mentors’ perspective
The ‘study group concept’ at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU) was implemented to aid first year students’ transitional challenges. A mentor (an older student) is affiliated each study group to facilitate productive group work, bring awareness to study habits, and share his/her own experiences with life as a student. The study explores the mentors’ benefits of their employment (n=43) and compares the mentors to non-employed students. Data was obtained through a questionnaire composed of open and closed questions. Findings suggest that a large portion of the mentors have expanded their network (67%), increased their consciousness of study habits (60%), and developed academic abilities (40%). The mentors constitute a group of students highly engaged in the university community compared to the non-employed students. Awareness of the benefits of student employment is important to both decision makers and students themselves.