On my first day of class, I was overcome with extreme nerves. Would my students think I was cool? Nerdy? Too old? Too young? Whatever the case, I walked in, my icebreaker in mind, ready to meet my students. I was relieved to be greeted by a group that was friendly, willing to participate, and as happy to be there as I was.
My favorite aspect of the peer mentor program was the first word in the title: peer. Although the course can seem a little bit like a teacher-student setup, it was nice to remember that these students, although a few years younger, are Honors students just like me. They are taking the same classes that I took and maybe even some of the ones I’m currently taking. That took some of the pressure off for sure.
Over the course of the nine weeks, we did some activities that left me wondering who the freshman of the group really was; we played Wallyball, something I had never tried due to my extreme lack of hand-eye coordination, and visited the career center, something I’ve been trying (unsuccessfully) to get myself to do since my first year on campus.
I would be lying if I said that there weren’t some stressful moments as well, mostly due to who I am as a person. Like any college student, I have a lot going on at any given time, and the planning was at times overwhelming. Thankfully, getting the bulk of my planning out of the way during the summer took a lot of the weight off my shoulders once the semester began, and everything ended up working out fine --despite the 90 degree weather on a day I had planned to walk with my class through Christy Woods.
In the end, I’m glad that I decided to become a peer mentor, even though I’m a little bit regretful that my first year as a mentor will also be my last. From my seat as a mentor, I often found myself transported back in time to my own Honors 100 course in 2014, and was reminded of all of the truly amazing opportunities Ball State and the Honors College has to offer.
To those looking to apply to be an Honors College Peer Mentor next fall, look out for more information coming in an Honors College email this spring or contact Dr. Laurie Lindberg.