Sarah Dennis is an alumnus of UON who has been involved in the LUCY mentoring program since its inception. Having studied a Bachelor of Business, majoring in Marketing, Sarah has mentored students through her career in different businesses such as MasterFoods and then Bluetongue Brewery.
With an almost unbroken seven-year-involvement in the LUCY mentoring program, it’s easy to see that the program offers value not only for the mentee, but for the mentor.
Now director of her own company, Fresh Marketing, Sarah (pictured at left with current mentee Danni Burrell) finds that she often learns from the students she’s mentoring. “I really like to see what’s happening with the university and what students are studying. It’s interesting to see how different models and ways of thinking can be applied,” Sarah said.
“One of the students I’ve mentored, Amy Shadbolt, really enjoyed being in the workplace, learning about what happens in a boardroom, the types of things to expect in the workplace. She has a real passion for research and she’s ended up working in a research company.
“I didn’t have a formal mentor, I was a self-starter, but I think it’s really important to have the guidance and to bounce ideas and thoughts with those people. When you’ve come through an educational environment, defining who you want to be and where you want to end up is invaluable.” Sarah said.
The tips you pick up via a mentor are invaluable, Sarah’s advice goes beyond her mentoring role with Lucy “I also like to help them with their resumes, I’ve recruited 100s of people, there might be new techniques, but I can show them what I look for in a resume. I also take the students to networking groups and events. I impress upon them the importance of growing your profile on LinkedIn and in certain groups. I always take my students to any events that come up and link them up with influential people.”
The LUCY mentoring program is available for women studying in the University of Newcastle’s Faculty of Business and Law at a second level or above. This program pairs undergraduates with a woman who’s working in industry and is prepared to share her knowledge with other women. In this valuable program, the mentor and mentee work together in a Work Based Activity in the mentor’s workplace, for a total of 35 hours.