Nine Bond University student leaders have been matched with Queensland’s Captains of Industry as part of the University’s flagship mentoring program, designed to enhance graduate employability and provide Bond’s ‘best and brightest’ with unparalleled career insight and opportunities.
The Vice-Chancellor's Mentor Program pairs students with accomplished mentors within their field of study to provide one-on-one guidance and career advice throughout the duration of their degree.
The initiative is offered as part of the prestigious Vice-Chancellor's Scholarship, awarded annually to a handful of the country's highest achieving school-leavers.
A diverse range of business executives have signed on to mentor this year's students spanning finance and investment, sport, education and recruitment.
Bond University Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Tim Brailsford, said the program - now in its fourth year - had attracted some of the state’s top business executives since its inception, including Queensland Chief Entrepreneur Mark Sowerby.
“The Vice-Chancellor's Mentor Program accelerates the talent and career ambitions of our student leaders, to ensure they hit the ground running from day one of entering the workforce,” he said.
"Each mentor is an experienced and trusted advisor and has a unique relationship with their mentee that often results in the mentees being invited to take part not just in their corporate world, but in their family events and celebrations too.
“We are very grateful to our mentors, not just for sharing their experience, wisdom and contacts, but for giving so graciously of their time, which we appreciate is their most valued asset.”
In 2016 Mark Sowerby, Queensland Chief Entrepreneur and Founder of Blue Sky Alternative Investments Limited, was paired with business/law student, Emma Sam.
Mr Sowerby said the most important thing that the Bond University Vice-Chancellor's Mentor Program offered students was opportunity, by bridging study with the real world and providing tangible and personal connections.
“I find if you give young people a sliver of an idea, a crack, an opportunity - the good ones tear back the curtain and just go charging through,” he said.
“Emma certainly did this by saying ‘yes!’ to every single opportunity she was given.”
Ms Sam said she felt incredibly fortunate to have had Mr Sowerby as a mentor for the past year.
“Mark Sowerby is an amazing man and inspirational leader who has opened my eyes to the business world and possibilities of my future career,” Ms Sam said.
“He has taken me under his wing and in doing so, I’ve been able to experience so many unbelievable things, including working alongside his Blue Sky team on Madison Avenue, New York.
“Being involved with Blue Sky has given me exposure to an incredible range of individuals from all over the country and the world. I have never felt so inspired and motivated to make the most of every opportunity given to me and take my career in my own two hands and run with it.
“Mark’s achievements extend far beyond his building and transformation of Blue Sky, including swimming the English Channel and supporting countless charities. He is truly a down to earth, amazing, inspiring and unique individual and I cannot stress the impact that he has had, and will continue to have, on the rest of my career.”
The mentors taking part in the 2017 Vice-Chancellor’s Mentor Program are:
- KPMG Partner-in-Charge, Adam Twemlow
- Australian University Sport CEO, Don Knapp
- Emmanuel College Principal, Patrick Innes-Hill
- Trade & Investment Queensland Executive Director International Education & Training, Rebecca Hall
- Blue Sky Alternative Investment Head of Venture Capital and Executive Director, Elaine Stead
- Westpac Institutional Bank Executive Director and Head, Richard Green
- Davidson Recruitment Founder & Director of Growth, Rob Davidson
- Bank of Queensland Specialist Business CEO, Dr Brett Robinson
- G8 Education General Counsel & Company Secretary, Sarah Zeljko