October 2021 Volunteer Profile
27 October is National Mentoring Day. With this occasion in mind, we would like to spotlight one of our dedicated mentors on the Mentoring Works Programme.
This month’s Volunteer Profile is Philip Stott, Principal Software Developer at Trailstone. He has been actively involved and committed to changing young people’s lives as part of the Mentoring Works Sixth Form Programme. As a mentor, and through his extensive professional expertise, he helped young people understand their career options, raise their aspirations, achieve their goals and, ultimately, “be ready” for work.
Your name and job title: Philip Stott, Principal Software Developer
Why do you volunteer?
I have mentored seven or eight graduates in my career as a software engineer and derived a great deal of satisfaction from seeing their abilities and confidence grow with instruction. My star pupil is now a managing director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch! These mentees were all ‘from the right side of the tracks’, and so I thought it would be an added bonus if I could help out kids from more deprived areas.
What have you gained from your volunteering experience?
Through mentoring with ELBA I have gained a renewed faith in the decency, determination and ability of the next cohort to enter into the world of higher education and the workforce. As a 50-year-old white man (even though I’m a dad of pre-teens), it’s too easy to absorb the lazy media narrative of a new snowflake generation of kids ill-prepared for work and a meaningful contribution to society. My mentee thoroughly disabused me of that fact. Also, although it quickly became clear that my mentee didn’t really need a mentor – aside from helping him prioritise the actions he’d already determined would be required to attain his chosen degree course. I always looked forward to our weekly mentoring calls.
Would you recommend volunteering to a colleague and if so, why?
I would thoroughly recommend mentoring to a colleague for all the reasons above!
Congratulations to Philip on a fantastic piece of volunteering.