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ABM Office of Student Mentoring Expands Peer Mentoring Program

mentor and mentee sitting at a table

By Samantha Eubanks

The Agricultural Business Management Office of Student Mentoring is excited to offer the Peer Mentoring program for agricultural business management (ABM) majors again during the upcoming school year. This year there will be at least five peer mentors on staff, with one or more available for two hours Monday-Friday in the Agricultural and Resource Economics student space, Room 4305 in Nelson Hall.

Peer mentors are trusted upperclassmen who can help with problems, questions and decisions, from how to choose minors to how to balance school and personal life. Last year, peer mentors helped students create academic plans that allowed them to study abroad or graduate earlier than expected, and professional profiles and resumes that helped them stand out in the job market.

“I went in to speak with upperclassmen about how they have learned to manage stress during their time as a student,” ABM student Jonah Armstrong said. “It was helpful to talk to someone that I knew had gone through the same things and made it through.”

Cooper Cable (pictured above), from Robbinsville, North Carolina, was one of the first peer mentors who helped launch the Office of Student Mentoring last year.

“It gave students an outlet to ask questions and get advice that was a little less formal than going to their adviser,” Cable said. “It gave them the view of someone also going through many of the same feelings and emotions in their decision-making process. The program helps students know that our department truly cares about them and wants to see them succeed.”

When asked about the program’s impact, he said that serving as a peer mentor motivated him to continue bettering himself academically and personally to set a good example for the students he mentored.

“Peer mentoring gave me an opportunity to help students that were having a difficult time discovering what paths to take,” he said. “I went through the same things and am very happy that I get to ensure others have it easier than I did.”

In addition to the Peer Mentoring program, the Office of Student Mentoring also offers a Professional Mentoring program, where students have the opportunity to be matched with a professional mentor currently working in their agricultural sector of study or interest. The matches are based on mutual surveys filled out by the participants to optimize compatibility and potential success.

Lee Anne Hamke, marketing and performance consultant for John Deere and professional mentor last year, said, “I am so proud to be a part of this program. It is an absolute honor. I feel that I get more out of it than I could ever give.”

The Office of Student Mentoring offers even more to students beyond peer and professional mentoring. Agricultural Business students are also invited to attend road trips, specialized skill workshops, networking fairs, mingling events and professional association conferences.

Interested in learning more about how the Office of Student Mentoring can help you? Please contact Colleen Hembree or Sarah Grace Stone for more information.