Peer mentors

Peer support is made up of two schemes:

If you would like to talk to a current student before and during the first few months of university, peer mentoring is available for any first year undergraduate.

Your mentor will usually study a similar subject to you. They are there to listen when you need to talk, and to answer any questions you have about your course in general or university life. We'll contact you via email in late August to let you know how to request a mentor or you can sign up via this webpage when the request form is open (late August).

Many students say that it is nice to know that there is someone to talk to, even if you don’t need them. Last year around 1,200 new students had a peer mentor and 87% said their peer mentor had improved their student experience.

Email student-peer-support@bristol.ac.uk with any queries.

About the scheme

The aim of the scheme is to help you settle in to the University. Your peer mentor is available from just before you start university until the end of January.

Although the main scheme ends in January, if you feel you could benefit from the support of a peer mentor after this, please contact us and we will discuss options with you student-peer-support@bristol.ac.uk. We can extend the scheme on an individual basis if you feel it would benefit you.

The scheme is opt-in, so if you have settled into university and no longer need a peer mentor you can tell them in person, or email student-peer-support@bristol.ac.uk.

The role of a peer mentor

A peer mentor is someone who is trained to be a mentor to you. To provide you with good quality mentoring support, peer mentors should only mentor you for about one hour at a time.

Peer mentors are unable to spend long periods of time with you, such as an evening out for dinner. Instead they are there to listen and direct you to help yourself. If you want to know more about mentoring skills, you could apply to become a peer mentor for the next academic year.

Peer mentors are not academic tutors. If you need academic support or tutorials, you can speak to your personal tutor. Your peer mentor can talk to you about the course in general and what to expect from it. However, they can’t look through your work or do revision with you.

Activities

You can choose to do a variety of activities with your peer mentor, you might like to do the following:

  • Meet for a chat 
  • Arrange a video call
  • Exchange emails and messages
  • A campus tour 
  • Go for a coffee 
  • Meet up with other first-year students.

Contact time

Peer mentors can spend up to an hour per week in contact with you. This varies from person to person. You may find you need less contact at some times and your mentor will understand that. Each mentoring relationship is different.

Finding the right peer mentor

When you apply, you provide basic details about yourself and we use this to match you with a peer mentor. Matching is done on a first-come first-served basis.

Although we can't guarantee it, we will normally match you with a mentor who is doing the same or a similar course to you.

However, where you have expressed a preference for a mentor who shares similar characteristics to you, we will try to match on your preference.
 
Peer mentors for mature students

Some of our peer mentor team are mature students. If you are 21-years-old or over and prefer to be matched with one of our mature peer mentors, please state this when you sign up for the scheme.

 
Who to contact if you haven’t heard from your peer mentor

If you haven’t heard from your mentor, first check your junk email mailbox to see if they have emailed your. They will email you from their University of Bristol email address.

If you haven’t heard from your peer mentor by the start of Welcome Week, and requested a mentor by the deadline, please email student-peer-support@bristol.ac.uk.

If you are having problems contacting your mentor please email us on student-peer-support@bristol.ac.uk and we will sort this out for you.

Become a Peer Mentor

Applications for the Peer Mentor role are now closed for working in 21/22.  We expect to advertise for the roles again in February 2022. All roles are advertised via mycareer and myopportunites.

Roles were recruited for from Febuary 21st 2021 - March 14th 2021 and were advertised via mailing lists and on mycareer.

Peer support

Peer support at the University is made up of two schemes:

  • Peer mentoring
  • Peer assisted study sessions

Peer mentoring is available for new first year undergraduate students and foundation year students.

Peer mentoring welcome event

At the beginning of the acdemic year we run a series of peer mentoring welcome events. At our welcome events, you’ll be able to meet with your peer mentor and other first year students whilst taking part in some engaging activities.

The welcome events will take place within the first 3 weeks of term. Once you've been allocated a mentor they will tell you more about the events and how to access them.

In September 2020, due to COVID19, these events were transferred online. They ran very successfully online. Depending on the situation and goverment guidelines in September 2021, we aim to hold these events in person. However, we have the option to run these online if necessary.

There are also other opportunities to meet your mentor.

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