University mentoring project celebration honours students

The annual Southampton Solent University Mentoring Celebration was an inspiring afternoon for students and graduates.

Taking place at Southampton Solent University Conference Centre, and hosted by the Employability and Enterprise Team, the event aimed to thank and recognise the contribution of businesses, students and recent graduates to the success of this year’s programme.

Over the course of six months local employer mentors provide student mentees with work related personal advice, practical employability skills and industry-specific information. Every year a range of individuals and organisations give their time regularly and freely to become a “professional friend” to their mentee.

This year 85 mentors and 102 mentees participated in the programme, which includes a formal training element. In addition to the more traditional one-to-one support, some participating organisations such as E3 Consulting, Carnival UK, Old Mutual Wealth, Ordnance Survey and Countess Mountbatten Hospice Charity have taken a group mentoring approach, and provided workshops to support employability needs. These workshops covered topics such as networking, CVs and application and interview skills. Furthermore, some companies have also supported our students and recent graduates at various networking events and our Placement, Leavers’ and Creative conferences.

The audience heard about the mentee journey and learning about the UK business culture from Georgi Ivanov, postgraduate Marketing Management student from Bulgaria. Additionally mentors Frank Somers and Bob Dixon of Carnival UK and Caroline Anson from Hampshire Constabulary spoke about their experiences and how it is always a “two way learning process.”

A toast was raised to thank all involved and all mentees and mentor were given a certificate to recognise their achievement in successfully completing the programme. Mentor and Mentee of the Year awards were presented to individual participants, in addition to special recognition awards for local businesses. The winners this year were:

Mentor of the year: Victoria Odey, Hampshire Chambers of Commerce

Her mentee said, “She was flexible, making sure we continued to communicate even at the busiest times. She helped me explore different options and opportunities, gave me endless support and advice. Best of all she helped me develop industry contacts and enabled me to secure a social media marketing role”

Mentoring Awards 2015 Elizabeth Selby - Dean of Learning and Information Services, Victoria Odey - Hampshire Chambers of Commerce and Mentor of the Year 2014/15 Mentee of the year: Emily Alcock, BA (hons) Business Management, final year

Emily’s mentor was from Hampshire Constabulary and said, “She was always willing to address the key issues. She wasn’t intimidated by people or processes and used her previous work experience and focussed on the outcome ahead. She gained a great place on the JP Morgan Graduate Scheme that will see her flying around the world over the next two years.”

Mentoring Awards 2015 Elizabeth Selby - Dean of Learning and Information Services Emily Alcock - BA (hons) Business Management - Mentee of the Year Outstanding Contribution 2015: Carnival UK (received by Bob Dixon, General Manager – EMEA Sales, and Frank Somers, Solutions Architect)

Mentoring Awards 2015 Frank Somers, Carnival UK -receiving 'outstanding contribution award', Elizabeth Selby - Dean of Learning and Information Services, Box Dixon Carnival UK - receiving 'outstanding contribution award' Outstanding Contribution: E3 consulting (received by Zoe Toseland, Marketing Administrator & Ian Barwick, Research Administrator)

Mentoring Awards 2015 Elizabeth Selby - Dean of Learning and Information Services, Zoe Toseland - E3 Consulting - receiving 'outstanding contribution award', Ian Barwick - E3 Consulting - receiving 'outstanding contribution award'

The awards were presented by Elizabeth Selby, Dean of the Learning and Information Service, who thanked all mentors and mentees for their incredible contribution and involvement in the project. Rosy Jones, Head of Employability and Enterprise shared information about the impact and successes of the project and how being involved increases student employability and employment outcomes.

Students, graduates or colleagues who are interested in taking part in the 2015/16 mentoring programme, should contact


About Southampton Solent University 

Southampton Solent University offers more than 19,000 students over 200 qualifications ranging from HND to PhD, in subjects such as maritime education and training, fashion and design, media and television, music, health, sport and leisure, business, IT and technology. The University was awarded the 2013 Quality Assurance kitemark for quality and standards of teaching and learning. Solent was voted one of the most creative universities in the UK in a Which? University 2014 poll of students. Solent Business School has been awarded the Small Business Charter Award, which is supported by the Association of Business Schools and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and ‘gold approval’ by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).


About Us

Home to around 11,000 students studying everything from HNDs to PhDs, Southampton Solent University is dedicated to enabling learners of all backgrounds to become enterprising citizens and responsible leaders, while also promoting economic and social prosperity. Winner of the Times Higher Education ‘Most Improved Student Experience’ Award 2015, Solent is a dynamic university with strong local links and a growing network of global connections – and a reputation for developing grounded, well-prepared graduates with the skills and experience employers want. Holder of the small business charter, home to one of the world’s leading maritime training academies and voted one of the UK’s most creative universities in the 2013 and 2014 Which? University student polls, Solent applies passion and innovative practice to all its courses. Spanning business and law, the creative industries, engineering and technology, maritime, media, sport and tourism, those courses deliver a practical blend of career-focused tuition and real-world experience – giving our students the tools they need to shape their own success.



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