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Peer-to-Peer Mentoring Program

Usually, during their third semester, students of the SDAC Master’s program get to visit Peking University to experience student life in China.

However, during the winter semester 20/21, because of the Coronavirus pandemic, our 3rd cohort had to stay in Erlangen. This meant for the first time in the short history of the SDAC program, that students of one cohort would be able to meet and mentor the students of the next cohort. With these advantages in mind, the 1st SDAC Peer-to-Peer Mentoring Program (P2P) was established.

 

Here is what some of the students taking part in the P2P Mentoring Program during WS 2020/2021 have to say about it:

Gill, 3rd cohort (mentor):
    • Our program is very young, and also, because of the mandatory semester abroad in Beijing, we didn’t have enough connections between students. However, through the peer-to-peer program, we were able to make new connections and share our diverse experiences and thoughts with first-year students even in the current situation. I believe this program will make SDAC students scattered around the world tightly knit together!
Kseniia, 3rd cohort (mentor):
    • Socialization has always been a crucial part of our lives. In times of the COVID-19 global pandemic, those measures taken by governments to stop the spread of the virus have, unfortunately, also limited and complicated the socialization processes. The Peer-To-Peer program presents opportunities for students to remain social, to interact, mutually help and support each other as well as to share some experiences and knowledge. It helps to create social bonds between students from different backgrounds and cohorts, which, in turn, contributes to what Germans refer to as Teamgeist.
Henny, 3rd cohort (mentor):
    • I was able to participate in the peer-to-peer mentoring program this semester which proved to be a great way to get to know the newest cohort in our SDAC program. I believe that the third and fourth cohorts are much closer due to the implementation of this program. Luckily, my buddy and I were able to meet a couple of times before Germany went into strict lockdown. We bonded and could learn from one another about our experiences. It was also nice because we were matched with students who had similar interests as us. For example, my buddy and I both have undergraduate degrees in sociology. I am already looking forward to the day when the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted and all the students can finally meet again in person.
Uyen, 4th cohort (mentee):
    • My buddy (mentor) was a big help for me by sharing and connecting his previous experience with the SDAC program. He explained every detail all the concerns I had about personal career-oriented and opportunities related to the programs. The P2P mentoring program was the first bridge that helped me understand how STRONG and SPECIAL the collaboration among the same peers, different peers, and even students and professors in this program – SDAC. You can always find the deepest connections, the most sincere help, and thoughtful and fair advice from all people around this SDAC family. Here, there are the smart people who are ready to question your arguments and beliefs towards finding out the most convincing truth and those who are willing to assist you without hesitation.
Alexandra, 4th cohort (mentee):
    • Starting the semester online and not having the possibility to exchange personally on different matters, it is nice to get to know someone who has already gone through a very similar experience. However, due to the fact that personal contact is not really possible at the moment, it is also difficult to stay in touch with the mentor regularly, because you cannot really get to know each other online. Nonetheless, it is still a good opportunity to have someone to ask any kind of questions and get to know the people from the other cohort.