I became aware of the Alumni Leadership Mentoring Programme by chance; I had not heard about it before and only explored it further due to my tendency to procrastinate (especially around exams). Going through the list of possible mentors one stood out for me, Martin Devenish. I have always been fascinated by banking and after reading Martin’s background as MD of Emerging Markets at Goldman Sachs I was hooked and determined to be mentored by him.
Being accepted I was initially very excited, which turned very quickly to slight nervousness about what I should do now? Thankfully the ALMP organisers give you a good briefing about what to expect, first meetings and other useful information (so don’t be worried about this.)
Moving on to our first meeting, it took a little longer for me to meet Martin as he was away on business to Africa ( as you casually do.) Our first meeting (after a few emails to arrange a meeting) was coffee in the Barbara Music building. Our first meeting went very well; we discussed where I was academically and more importantly career talk. What I liked about Martin as a mentor was he started of saying ‘my aim as a mentor is too meet your expectations as a mentee and I will try and help you in any way that I can,’ this was extremely encouraging and very relieving as I had been relying on him to assist me with data collection for my dissertation. We finished the meeting with him giving me his card with about 7 different contact points and him saying if there’s anything you need give a message and I’ll help all I can.
Although, the mentoring relationship started slower than I initially thought I am extremely glad I am a part of the programme and I would highly recommend anyone to apply, even after only one meeting this in a great opportunity for all students.