Mentoring Program - frequently asked questions for students
What is a mentor and who is a mentee?
For Future Tracks, a mentor is an experienced early childhood teacher who has been professionally trained to support, guide and engage with two mentees during their bachelor degree in early childhood education.
A mentee is someone who has applied for and been accepted into the Future Tracks program. They may have just finished school or may be an early childhood educator who is working with children. Either way, we will match you with a mentor and fellow mentee to get your relationship off to a great start.
How much does it cost?
For mentees: the program is free! There are no hidden costs or expenses. For mentors: Future Tracks covers the cost of your time with your employer so that you still get paid for your time.
How much of my time will it take up?
The actual time commitment is only a few hours per month face-to-face, with an opportunity for moments of contact in a structured way in between sessions if needed.
Most students don’t really see it as an extra workload as it supports their overall study experience. And mentors are able to find time around their rosters or talk to their employers about times that work for everyone. The program is designed with flexibility in mind. We make it as easy as possible.
What does peer-to-peer mentoring mean?
For Future Tracks, we mean that there are two students to one mentor and you all meet together and interact through a three-way dynamic learning experience. It means mentees get to practice being mentors as well.
How long does it take?
The mentoring program starts in your second semester and takes you through to your final year. Your mentor may change during this time, but if the relationship is going well and you are growing together it can be beneficial to stay with the same team.
Can I just try it for a while?
Future Tracks is a high quality program that is a first of its kind in Australia. We are committed to supporting the next generation of teachers and leaders through a cohesive and well designed journey – for both the mentor and the mentees. We ask for your commitment during the program and we provide you both with the resources and tools you need to make the process smooth and enjoyable.
How will it help me get a job or develop my career?
Graduates from Future Tracks will have the edge over other potential employees as they will have been accepted into a prestigious program with excellent leadership experience and a paid placement in an early childhood centre. With the mentoring component, students will also graduate with the foundations for becoming a mentor themselves.
Future Tracks mentors are also provided with excellent training and support to develop and extend their value to their employers. They can mentor others in their workplace as well as develop their strengths in particular areas with access to research and new information through the Universities we partner with.
Mentors may also find they are more confident liaising with families, talking to parents and engaging with the community they work in. They can also explore ideas with students about the relationship between theory and practice – with access to fresh ideas and insights they gain from the peer-to-peer exchange.
What do I do if something goes wrong?
Life isn’t always perfect but the good news is that the Future Tracks mentoring program has very good support for students and mentors if either of you found that things were not going to plan. You can talk to your mentor or a Future Tracks support person to work out how we can solve any issues, challenges or worries during your mentoring journey.