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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

3-4-24 PDF
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Peer to Peer


Attending a commuter school like UMass Boston can be a challenge in many ways for incoming freshman.  It is difficult to make friends and to get involved on campus, but it is important that these students realize that there are many ways to maximize their involvement.

Having a mentor who students can turn to for questions, help, or advice can have a profound impact on a student’s level of comfort in that class specifically or at the university in general.

By working within the classroom, the Peer Mentors Program allows all students to learn how to get involved. This past semester, I was lucky enough to be a peer mentor for a freshman literature seminar.  All of the FYS (First Year Seminars) have a mentor in the class who is there for the benefit of the students, but most importantly, to act as an additional resource, thus helping the students develop a better, more personal relationship to the university. 

The FYS serve the purpose of further acclimating freshman into their newfound college atmosphere, and the mentors who work within them can be a key component in the overall development and attitude of these students.  The mentor’s presence in these FYS is essential, but it is important that the students use their mentor’s to the fullest extent.  From my experience, I found that a great many students used me for help inside the classroom, as well as for advice on other elements of college life such as class selection, advising, or even advice on where to go and study. 

The Peer Mentors Program can be a great learning experience for the mentors as well, building their own connections to the university.  Not only was I able to meet some wonderful students, but I was also able to get to know some of the faculty better. Being a transfer student myself, I understand the difficulties of adjusting to the commuter environment and the challenges of becoming involved and making new friends, which was why I felt as though my advice and input was helpful to incoming freshman. Getting involved in any program on campus is a great way to feel as though you belong, and despite the size of the school or the number of students, there are always programs, clubs, or sports that you can seek out. If you are interested in learning more about the Peer Mentors Program, visit the offices of Academic Support, located on the first floor of the Campus Center.