ACU Interchange Mentoring Program wins national award
Published: Thursday 23rd February 2017
ACU Careers Adviser Tina Li and International Student Adviser Eveline Overink.
The ACU Career Development Service was recently recognised at the annual NAGCAS (National Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services) Conference held in Adelaide. In 2016, the Career Development Service (CDS) worked in close collaboration with ACU International to develop the Interchange Mentoring Program for international students. The program was jointly awarded first place for the NAGCAS Rising Star Award.
ACU Careers Adviser Tina Li, and International Student Adviser Eveline Overink, provided a framework which included coaching students to explore their ideas, strengths and weaknesses. The process focussed on goal setting, leadership development, effective teamwork and conflict management. The program’s success was in allowing students to drive the initiative. Staff were able to act as facilitators, rather than play a leadership role, setting up a structure and creating a community for students to come together to be innovative.
The ACU mentors successfully recruited and maintained 33 participants in the program, with 95 per cent of ACU participants attending all compulsory sessions – the highest attendance rate of the six universities in the program. Of the 27 pitches submitted to the Interchange judges, ACU students were involved in four of the five teams that went through to the final stage, with first and second place winners supported and assisted by ACU Mentors. Many of the mentors now make up the leadership team of the International Student’s Club and contribute significantly to CDS and International events including the International Student’s Employability Forum.
Interchange Mentor Alvaro Rezende shared his experiences with us: “Our Pre-Interchange Mentoring Program was a valuable experience at ACU. As previous Interchangers we were able to guide new students prior to the commencement of the program by providing them with all of our knowledge acquired in the 2015 Edition of Interchange. As a 2015 participant and a 2016 Peer Advisor I believe that an "ease-in" approach, as the one used at ACU, to Interchange is valuable and contributed to a great performance by ACU students.”