Message from Scott Cowie, Senior Division head
Monday, May 2: IB2 exams begin
Wednesday, May 4: U.S. colleges overview workshop for IB1 students, room 302, 8:30 a.m.
All IB1 boys should be reading Future Ties, the weekly online publication sent to them directly from the university counselling office, every Tuesday.
This week marks the final week of our Foundation Year students pairing up with Form 7 boys for an overnight experience in Norval. My thanks to all the FY boys who were involved in this worthy initiative who gave their time and energy in an effort to establish a mentoring relationship to help the graduating boys from the Prep in their transition to the Upper School.
I read a Forbes article published last week titled “Don’t Choose a Mentor” which spoke to the importance of not having just one but a number of mentors throughout life’s journey. “Eighty per cent of CEOs say they’ve had mentors in their career, but the real key is the ‘s.’ Very few people actually reach the CEO suite with only one mentor,” the article said.
The piece highlights the value in having mentors from different connection points who can provide a variety of perspectives. Although targeted at working professionals, I felt that one of the mentor-types identified in the article resonated particularly with the goals of the FY/Form 7 mentorship program:
“Look at your peers not as competition, but as professional advisers. Having thoughtful colleagues as advisers is critical because they are more likely to be honest with you. They understand what it’s like to walk in your shoes — they are often in the same situation themselves. Plus, since they are around your age, these friendships may develop into lifelong relationships that don’t retire when you still have many years left in your career.” (Forbes/Leadership, “Don’t Choose a Mentor,” April 21, 2016)
Research shows that, in general, boys are reluctant to reach out for help. Therefore, it’s imperative for us as parents to communicate the importance of relying on others for support. Further, we should try to model effective mentorship relationships with our children by either mentoring others ourselves or by introducing our mentors to them. Regardless of age, we can all use guidance from a friend; someone who can offer direction, support, constructive criticism and affirmation of a job well done.
I encourage you to have a conversation with your son about a mentor that you had or have. Perhaps he’ll feel challenged to actively seek mentors for himself. Realistically, we may not always be able to be there for our kids or may not always be the ones to whom they look for advice. Thus, having someone there for support, and knowing when to reach out to him or her, may be one of the most significant life lessons we can offer our children.
“I have learned that people will forget what you said; people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
Thanks for reading,