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Thankful For Mentorship

Thankful for Mentorship

Kate McKay
University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

Mentorship has always been an important part of my life. I participated in various mentee and mentor roles throughout high school and college, so when I graduated and got my first post-grad job in college admissions, I knew that finding a mentor would only help me to be more successful. I am lucky to work in an office with coworkers and superiors who have mentored me throughout my first year in admissions, but was thrilled when I stumbled upon the IACAC Mentorship Program while browsing the website.

The mentorship program matched me up with Lisa Winker, a counselor who shares my recruitment territory and works for an institution that’s similar to the one I work at, so she was immediately able to start giving me advice and feedback on questions I had. Beyond being there for me with travel tips and tricks, advice throughout my first year, and always having a seat for me at college fair dinners, the biggest benefit of my mentorship match with Lisa has been the opportunity to network. It is hard to jump into a territory where you do not know any of the other counselors, but Lisa always checked in at fairs to make sure I was doing okay and continued to introduce me to other counselors while encouraging me to get more involved in the admissions world and IACAC. She has encouraged me to follow some of my passions like LGBT* advocacy both in my office and in our territory, which has allowed me to make positive changes both on my campus and off!

Through connections and encouragement I have received through the mentorship program I have gained confidence in my abilities, networked with a ton of other counselors, joined two IACAC committees, submitted a conference proposal (to co-present with my former mentor), and had a lot of fun throughout my first full year in college admissions! This is a lot more than I ever imagined when I first applied for the program. The mentorship program has been invaluable for my development as a first-year admissions counselor and I passionately recommend it to all of the new counselors I meet. I look forward to the day that I have the experience to be a mentor and give another new admissions counselor the same opportunities I have enjoyed!

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