How do you feel that your faculty mentor(s) have helped you in finding your path and succeeding?
“Dr. Tyler Fisher and Dr. Sheila Piñeres have helped me become a better version of myself by providing me with endless encouragement and support over the past few years. Working with them has given me a stronger grasp on my own strengths and how I can leverage them in application essays and interviews. They have also helped me become more self-aware about my weaknesses and have worked with me on improving in these areas so that I know what challenges I might face in the future and how to overcome them.”
How important is/was having a mentor and how did you find ones that were right for you?
“Having mentors is incredibly important to me because I deeply value having someone to talk to and ask for advice as I move through my professional development journey. The many conversations I’ve had with Dr. Fisher and Dr. Piñeres over the years have helped me gain a better understanding of what I want to do in the future because they have always provided unique perspectives on my situation. Because they have worked with several students and have been through a lot of the same things I am facing now, they have been able to suggest alternative courses of action that help me get to where I’m going while avoiding the potential pitfalls.”
What doors has your mentor opened that you feel you wouldn’t have had access to otherwise?
“It was in Dr. Fisher’s Windows to the World class that I started to learn about prestigious programs and awards that I could apply for while at UCF. This course helped me improve my written and oral communication skills while exploring social issues that I am passionate about. Working with Dr. Fisher gave me the confidence to apply for these opportunities and put together strong applications when doing so.
Piñeres has always encouraged me to shoot for the moon and has given me the resources I need to be successful in these endeavors. It was through her support that I felt confident enough to run for president of the honors college’s student organization, Honors Congress. The experience I gained while serving in this leadership position during the pandemic significantly improved my ability to creatively solve problems and adapt to fast-changing situations. These skills have helped me distinguish myself when competing for subsequent leadership and service opportunities.”
What words of appreciation can you share about your mentor(s)?
“I truly would not be where I am today without the support of my incredible mentors. From reading over drafts of my writing to giving me a heads-up on new opportunities to pursue, they have always supported me and helped me put my best foot forward. Having Dr. Fisher and Dr. Piñeres believe in me over the past four years has helped me believe in myself more and gain the confidence I need to continue my professional development following my graduation from UCF.”