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Emerging as a leader with the Student Mentor Program

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Bachelor of Business (Management) student, Renee is very active within the Swinburne Online community. As a proud Student Mentor and Emerging Leader, she is a strong supporter of embracing new opportunities during your studies.

We caught up with Renee to learn more about her online experience and get her best advice for fellow students looking to achieve success.

Choosing online

Renee has worked within the local government sector for 14 years, focusing on governance, anti-corruption, legislative compliance and effective policymaking. She decided to undertake a Bachelor of Business to ensure that her skillset wasn’t confined to just one sector.

As a full-time worker and competitive sportswoman, it was clear to Renee that studying online would be the best option for her busy routine. She values the flexibility that:

Studying online allowed me to prioritise and manage my time effectively without impacting my sporting schedule too much!

Student mentoring

Renee was the first person in her family to attend university, which often left her feeling a bit lost in the system. Luckily, with the help of her eLearning Advisors (eLAs), group projects and student support teams, she found her feet in the world of online learning. So when the call-out came for students to volunteer for the Mentor Program, Renee decided to sign up.

Understanding that university can often be overwhelming, I hoped my contribution would assist new students on their academic journey and give back to the people who supported me.

Overall, Renee has loved being a part of the Student Mentor Program, helping others discover different avenues and experiences to explore within their degrees.

My favourite thing about being a Mentor was highlighting the groups and programs available and witnessing participants’ enthusiasm grow.

Becoming an Emerging Leader

Along her Mentor journey, Renee discovered Swinburne’s Emerging Leader Program, which provides recognition for the valuable skills developed in activities alongside studying. Taking part on this program helps students stand out in the crowd of graduates with formal recognition on your academic transcript.

While progressing through the program, Renee found her focus shifting from simply gaining recognition to embracing new project and volunteer opportunities. During this time, she was also nominated as a finalist for the Local Government Australia Women’s Association 2020 Bursary Award and thriving in a six-week secondment as Acting Team Leader – Governance.

 I believe my applications for these awards and positions were supported by my voluntary work and the Emerging Leader Award.

Looking to the future

When thinking of fellow and future Swinburne Online students, Renee recommends participating in the Student Mentor Program as both a Mentor and a Mentee.

It is a great platform to connect with experienced and motivated students who have already navigated the realm of online learning. The help is out there if you dare to ask for it!

She also wants to thank her family, friends, and Swinburne for supporting her on this journey.

After graduation, Renee will be working towards a more permanent senior role. And while she would prefer to stay within Local Government, if an opportunity arises outside the sector, she knows she has the skills to succeed.

Completing the Emerging Leader Program, becoming a Mentor, and working toward a degree forced me out of my comfort zone and enabled me to have the confidence to apply for new opportunities. After all, what’s the worst that can happen if we only try?

Looking to future-proof your career and boost your resume like Renee? View our range of courses today.

If you are current student interested in getting involved in the online community, visit Mentors and Supporters for more information.