The BIG Alliance celebrates five years of Mentoring Works

 In BIG Alliance, Education, News

The BIG Alliance’s Year 10 Mentoring Works 2017-18 programme came to an end this month and was marked with great celebration by the Islington and Camden schools involved and their city mentor partners. Three fantastic recognition events were kindly hosted by Expedia Group, Macquarie Group and MUFG. Students, mentors, head teachers and Senior Leadership Team members, as well as school and company coordinators from across the programme were among the attendees. The events provided a platform to showcase all the achievements and successes of the young people, as well as sum up and evaluate the programme and thank all those involved.

This year’s celebrations held extra significance as they marked Mentoring Works’ fifth anniversary in the London Borough of Islington. Since The BIG Alliance launched Mentoring Works in 2013, over 900 young people have been mentored by more than 600 mentors.

This year alone, approximately 220 students have been supported by over 130 mentors. Participating schools included:

1. Arts and Media School, Islington
2. City of London Academy Highgate Hill
3. City of London Academy, Islington
4. Elizabeth Garrett Anderson School
5. Highbury Fields School
6. Holloway School
7. Maria Fidelis Roman Catholic Convent School
8. St Aloysius College
9. William Ellis School

Each school was matched to one of the following companies:

1. Dentsu Aegis Network
2. Euromonitor International
3. Expedia Group
4. Kennedys Law
5. Macquarie Group
7. The Guardian Foundation
8. Wolverine Worldwide

Students met their mentors fortnightly over the course of ten months and covered a range of topics in their mentoring sessions and trips. Popular themes as reported by students included CV writing, interview techniques, presentation skills, university options, career options, finding work experience, networking and business skills, revision, organisational skills, meeting their mentors’ colleagues and taking city tours.

Mentors and students presented their achievements and gave speeches at the recognition events and we were delighted to hear the about the impact of the programme. Highlights from student feedback included:

“I have a better idea of what the future looks like for me and, wherever I’ve come from; I can achieve anything if I put my mind to it.”

“I learnt that the only person holding me back is me.”

“School is where I learn academic stuff but my mentor really helped me develop my life skills. I’ve learned to leave my door open.”

Feedback from mentors was equally positive, with some saying:

“My students wanted to meet every two weeks despite how busy they were; I’ve watched them flourish.”

“I’m incredibly proud of my students, particularly how they’ve become more self-ware. I’m a big believer in having a mentor for life.”

The Mentoring Works team at The BIG Alliance look forward to continuing the programme with the next cohort of Year 10 students in Islington and Camden in the new academic year and beyond.

For any Mentoring or The BIG Alliance Education queries, please contact Karolina Szostak on

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