Celebrating an unofficial theme of ‘Partnership’, 75 students and 66 mentors from 10 schools and companies, celebrated their achievements at the Clock Tower, Department of Education & Skills with Minister Frances Fitzgerald
It was standing room only at the Clock Tower as from early afternoon a steady flow of mentors and students (along with their teachers and Principals) arrived from all over Ireland to celebrate their achievements over the past couple of years on the Mentoring Programme.
Partnership was the unofficial theme as multiple levels of commitment were celebrated on the day. M & S celebrated their 12th anniversary as core sponsors of the programme, an “exceptional achievement in any partnership” as Tina Roche, BITCI CEO, commented, and the continuing respect and trust between the Department of Children & Youth Affairs (DCYA) and BITCI was highlighted by Chairman of BITC, Kieran McGowan.
Speaking at the event, Michelle Murphy from Desmond College outlined how her mentor and their relationship had helped her ‘find her way’ academically in the years leading up to her Leaving Certificate. While Florin Frosim from Pobalscoil Rosmini had received two interviews and 2 offers of a college place as a direct result of the support and confidence that his mentoring relationship had given him. The other side of the relationship was given voice by Gareth McDonald from Microsoft when he revealed that he felt it a ‘big responsibility to impact someone’s life’ and how he learned through the process that there is no ‘one size fits all in the relationship’.
Congratulating all involved before she presented certificates, Minister Fitzgerald summed up with a quote from a mentor in her own life who had told her, if you can give someone an ‘Experience of Success’ you are likely to make a change in the life of an individual, and the student mentoring programme certainly does that. She challenged the students in the room to come back in the future as mentors. The final word goes to Noeleen Somers, the mother of one of the students from Patrician College, who sincerely thanked the mentors in Irish Life explaining the impact the programme had had on her son and how without the programme, her son would never have met anyone who worked in an office.
Roll on 2013/2014 and we look forward to our continued partnerships providing the ‘Experience of Success’ to an even wider group of students proving we are world class when it comes to mentoring!