The relationship Natalie and I developed was organic even though we were brought together in an artificial manner. The bond that was created began through fluid conversations between two people sharing career goals and dreams that are in line but simply at different points in their journeys. The greatest benefit I have received from becoming Natalie’s mentor is getting reinvigorated with a sense of purpose for my own career path. I am in awe at Natalie for her perseverance, dedication and ability to stay positive even through so much strife. To help someone like this well I do it wholeheartedly.
There are no bright line rules to making a successful mentorship. However somethings that worked well between Natalie and I were : 1) As a mentor listen attentively to your mentee; 2) Be honest about your own shortcomings, failures, fears, struggles in your past ; 3) create a safe space for your mentee; 4) give them the kick in the ass when they need it; 5) but above all be whomever they need when they need it (you will wear many hats)
If you can do this you will be rewarded tenfold.
In my own words, I am known for being very “go with the flow”, I don’t like to rock the boat or disturb the peace (at first). I am very observant and like to analyze the situation as much as possible before making a move. I stay on the surface until someone asks me more.
My mentor Jamie, in my own words, is a POWERHOUSE! The way she speaks commands the room, she has so much knowledge, and most of all she truly is the kindest! Also a certified bad a$$. She has taught me to be more comfortable with explaining in detail what I can bring to the table. We started our introductions by me sharing my resume. Despite it being two pages, she said she knew nothing about me from what was on paper. I was playing it on the surface until she asked me to highlight what I could offer others and also what things make me different. After a few drafts, she then said “WOW! See! I knew you were amazing, now I know why.” From that point on, I knew Jamie would whip me into shape by the time law school applications came around. She was such a great listener when it came to my personal and diversity statements. She really encouraged me to tell my truth and stick to who I was in my own story but to know you can remove the fluff!
I always wanted to show the utmost respect for my mentor as I found this mentorship to be a privilege. Especially because Jamie is the first attorney that I felt I could approach with any sort of question and her answer would be a response that I could understand and digest. And if I couldn’t understand then I could ask the same question again without judgement.
My tips for having a mentor would be 1. Stay in touch! 2. Remember they’re a human just like you. 3. No question is a dumb question.
Natalie is on her way to Southwestern Law School in the fall of 2022!