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My year as a Residence Life Mentor

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Endcliffe was my home in my first year of university and has again been for my last.

I have had so many memories in these halls, both good and bad. My first cooked meal (other than frozen pizza), my 18th birthday party, my first burnt meal and scratched frying pan!! As my Greek mother would say, my cooking "still needs feta for it to be tasty" but at least I try. My first year flatmates seemed to agree with her too. However, every cooking tragedy was followed by a kindly shared meal, courtesy of food delivery apps.

Back in my "fresher’s year", I met students from my building and others from nearby blocks as my bad cooking skills were excellent for breaking the ice! My strategy, as silly as it sounds, was to roast myself for my own cooking skills and then invite people over for dinner. Thankfully, I have never poisoned anyone (yet).

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(A picture of one of the legendary "friendship forging" meals. Credits to the local chinese restaurant that offered free all-day delivery)

The community within the halls of residence was and still is brilliantly vibrant.

Returning to the halls as a Residence Life Mentor allowed me to meet many other students and appreciate the hard work of the ACS staff. When I applied for this role, my knowledge of the residences originated primarily from my personal experience from my first year. However, having spent an academic year working with ACS, it has taught me that a huge workforce is running behind the scenes and as a Residence Life Mentor, I have joined this team in working hard to take care of the student community.

My duties include organizing activities for my mentees (that’s you guys!) as well as helping with staff-led events. When I started the role, I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of events and activities available across the three accommodation sites (Ranmoor, City and Endcliffe) and organising my own activities for my mentees has taught me to be creative and gain a better insight into what students need at different times of the year.

Being a Residence Life Mentor has also helped me greatly in stepping outside of my comfort zone and investing time and energy in creating a community vibe for my mentees. University changes your whole daily routine and living with others people, in my opinion, is the cherry on top.

I’ve loved helping students adjust to the new living arrangements and this year there haven’t been too much dramas, well that’s until someone burns someone else pam!  There’s still time!! But don’t worry, the Residence Life Mentors will come to the rescue to calm the things down.

In my opinion, this role is perfect for students who want to give something back to the student community and take the place of a friendly "big-brother" or "big-sister".

Throughout the year, my Endcliffe family of Residence Life Mentors have made me happy to come to work. It is clear that my colleagues are both compassionate and responsible but also silly and playful. This is helpful when we talk with our mentees, who enjoy a casual chat with a sprinkle of humour.

From my point of view, as a student, my work as a mentor relies heavily on what I would like to hear as a fresher or what I wish I'd known back then. The Residence Life Coordinators, who work with us closely, are keen to support us and help us fulfil our duties.

As I am graduating soon and starting a "grown-up" job, I will use the creativity and compassion this role has taught me and carry all the wonderful memories with me for life.

There’s still time to apply to become a Residence Life Mentor next year so for more information click here.

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