I was excited to speak to someone who was from a similar background to me who had the same aspirations. I went to a state school and was the first in my family to go to university.
My mentor was a reassuring voice. I loved that he had taken the steps that I wanted to take and I had the opportunity to hear his words of wisdom. He was particularly helpful when I was writing my personal statement; I’d send a draft and he’d send it back with amendments. He even showed a colleague at the law firm he worked in. We also did a mock interview, which was really helpful.
He’d always tell me he believed in me and that he knew I could do it, which gave me a lot of confidence. The experience made me doubt myself less because he made me see the potential I had. Sometimes it just takes someone else to see what you can’t see yourself. It really helped me overcome my imposter syndrome.
My advice to anyone joining a Brightside mentoring programme would be to take any opportunity that’s thrown at you. There are things that you can’t get from lessons in school. It’s such a flexible process; there are no deadlines, it’s very open and accessible for everyone. Investing in your future is so valuable and sometimes it takes a stranger who you have no relationship with, who can just objectively focus on you, to help you reach your goal.