MacMurray Peer Mentors: Your Personal Guides to Campus
October 3, 2019 | 1:00 PM
Maggie Doss '21, Biology Major
When I first came to MacMurray, I wasn’t expecting any help getting used to the college life during my first year. It wasn’t until I got to campus and received a form with an older student’s information on it that I found out about MacMurray’s Peer Mentor Program. Since the Peer Mentor Program’s main purpose is to help high school students and college transfers through their transition to Mac, I realized that I was going to have someone there to help me along the way if I needed it – and I ended up needing help quite a bit. Luckily, my mentor was one of my peers, and it was comforting to know that I could go to someone that’s been where I’ve been at before.
During my sophomore year, I decided to join the Peer Mentor Program because I wanted to return the favor to other incoming students. I wanted the first-year students to know that there were people here to help them get the swing of things and also make sure that they felt supported like I did. The process of becoming a Peer Mentor included turning in my application along with two recommendations and interviewing with the Dean of Student Life. Later that week I found out that I had gotten into the program.
Now I’m in my junior year at MacMurray and I’ve joined the Peer Mentor Program for a second year. There are 15 peer mentors and all of the mentors are assigned to the first-year students. As the only Advanced Peer Mentor, I’m assigned to assist all transfer students. Throughout the summer we receive the names of the students we’re paired with and the peer mentors become the first person the student goes to with questions. Once the semester starts, each peer mentor is also assigned as the mentor for a First-Year Seminar class.
I enjoy being a part of the program because I’m able to positively impact someone’s life and build a connection with them. I love being able to help new students through those beginning stages when they first come to Mac and I’ve become really good friends with all of the students I mentored last year. College can be really intimidating at first, but whether it’s giving the mentees advice on certain clubs and organizations to join on campus, what to do around Jacksonville, where to go for help in classes, where to get assistance with health issues, or just being there to listen to them, Peer Mentors are there for new students to have an immediate resource on campus.