Mentoring Works sees students excel at The Guardian Foundation

Mentoring Works sees students excel at The Guardian Foundation

Published on: 
Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Three graduates from our Mentoring Works programme impressed their Guardian Foundation mentor so much so that they went on to secure work experience placements with the Guardian News and Media. Kirstine Foge-Jensen, Director of Programmes at The Guardian Foundation, mentored City of London Academy Islington students Nida Arslan, Turkan Altun and Yeliz Rencber. They quickly formed a strong bond, and with Kirstine’s help and the skills the students acquired during the Mentoring Works programme, all three students secured work experience placements.

The week-long work experience placement focused on ‘the journey of a product’ and gave students the opportunity to work across different departments in the Digital Development team, including user experience, engineering and strategy. Students were asked to consider the question “What would a news product be for a 15-16 year old?” In order to successfully complete their task, students used the planning, analysis and presentation skills that they acquired during the Mentoring Works programme to inform their answer.

The placement culminated in the students giving a presentation to the strategy team, and with the help of The Guardian staff, they overcame their initial fears of presenting. The final panel of judges were so impressed that each student was subsequently offered monthly sessions to develop their knowledge of coding. At the end of the placement, Kirstine commented:

“When we first talked about the work experience, Nida and Yeliz said they would rather not do a presentation at the end. So well done to all business volunteers on equipping them with the knowledge and confidence throughout the week to be able to do it - and even enjoy it!”

Thank you to The Guardian for providing opportunities beyond the Mentoring Works programme, and for demonstrating a commitment to nurturing young people who are underrepresented in the tech industry.

Are you a business or education institution interested in engaging in our Mentoring Works programme? Please contact karolina.szostak@thebigalliance.org.uk