Bondy recognised for Indigenous student mentorship

January 30, 2018

Bond University Bachelor of International Relations/Bachelor of Laws student Jack Gohl has been awarded the 2017 Mentor of the Year by the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience (AIME) for his dedication to their Mentor Program.

Jack is one of 21 Bond University students who mentored 101 mentees through AIME this year, including running tutor squads at two local schools.

Fellow mentor and Centre Manager, Tom Wensley, said Jack joined AIME as a Mentor last year but this year had stepped-up into even bigger shoes as a Mentor Leader, in addition to the demands of his double degree.

“Jack has truly embraced what it means to be a leader among your peers,” Tom said.

“He has gone the extra mile by running tutor squads at Palm Beach Currumbin State High School and Miami State High School, working hard to support local kids in their transition to the next stage of education.”

Noah Allan, who has just finished Year 11 at Palm Beach Currumbin State High School, has been a program participant since 2014.

Earlier this year he was struggling with the demands of his school work, however with focused help from both his school and AIME mentors like Jack, he is now exceeding his current workload.

“Noah has gone above and beyond expectations and in his final term of Year 11, he actually went on to complete some Year 12 Maths assignments early,” Jack said.

"Noah is the embodiment of the power of attitude and commitment. As a mentee, he has grown immensely in 2017 and has shown a willingness to work when initially there wasn’t much that he wanted to work for.”

While studying at Bond, Jack worked as a Resident Master at The Southport School (TSS), where he put his unique rapport-building skills to use to connect with less engaged high school students.

It was through his Indigenous classmates and roommates from Bond, Mikayla Hudson and Daijah Martens, that Jack first heard about the AIME mentoring program.

“My roommates wore these really cool t-shirts and hoodies and went off to these ‘AIME’ program days where they worked with local Indigenous high school students,” Jack said.

“Mikayla sold me on the idea and one day took me along – and from there, I was hooked.

“I was actually taken aback by how impactful the experience was for me, and after some personal research on the success of AIME, I immediately applied for a part-time role.

“In 2017 I was brought on board in a more hands-on role and haven’t looked back since.”

Jack said through his experience as a mentor, he had learnt as much, if not more, than he had taught.

“I used to think that as a mentor, you had to become a teacher. If AIME has taught me anything this year, it’s that even as a teacher and a mentor, you can never -  and should never - stop learning,” he said.

“Every time I walk through the door for a tutor squad or a program day, I am constantly amazed at how much I learn and what I’m being taught by our mentees.

“Their growth this year has been amazing - as students, mentees, mentors and as people. “

Jack urges anyone to get involved in AIME’s mentoring program, highlighting the benefit of gaining transferrable skills helping to build positive relationships.

“Mentoring is such an important life skill to have and it’s undervalued in our society,” said Jack.

“Getting involved in AIME’s mentoring program gives university students a chance to give back to their local community and upskill at the same time.”

Jack is currently getting settled in Los Angeles for his semester abroad at the University of Southern California (USC), as part of Bond University’s Outbound Exchange program.

While he’s studying at USC, he plans to continue his work with AIME, in support of their plans to expand into US communities.

You can learn more about AIME and how to become a mentor at www.aimementoring.com