Leading and Learning With Peers
Laura Kitts is a fourth-year psychology student.
Many people enter university with an interest in certain subjects, and sometimes the answer to this question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Personally, I happen to have a passion for teaching and learning. One thing I know about myself is that I like to help people. And luckily, Carleton offers a number of programs that allow students to do this! Specifically, I have had opportunities to do this through the Peer Helper Program.
I began my third year at Carleton working as a Student Success Peer Helper for the Student Experience Office. Here I had an amazing experience working with other Carleton University students helping to organize events around campus. It was a rewarding feeling leaving the office every day knowing I had given back to my school. This feeling was something I wanted to continue with so I applied to be a Peer Helper for Learning Support Services, and here I am in my fourth year presenting workshops.
In this role, my responsibility is to effectively deliver study skills workshops to a variety of students. Working for Learning Support Services (LSS) allows me to connect with other students, develop good leadership skills and engage with academic material. I learn effective ways to deliver the material and tips about academic success. It is my job to make sure students leave feeling as though they can improve their learning in ways that they may have not been aware of. The greatest feeling is that while I am there to share information with students, I often times leave learning something new as well. The interaction with students is rewarding and makes my experience at LSS amazing.
There are many skills students gain from leading. I work alongside five other study skill workshop Peer Helpers. It is great to be part of a positive and encouraging environment and share ideas with other students. This position offers students the opportunity to help students learn to become successful academically and ensure that there are always ways to do well. It sometimes just takes time to figure out what works for you. It can be challenging to develop ways to relate with and deliver the material to students of different years and disciplines. Therefore, there is a need to engage with the material in multiple ways.
I am graduating this year, but looking back on my three years so far, I would have to say that my experiences working with the Ottawa and Carleton communities have made an impact on who I am now.
I encourage all students to find a way to get involved and give back to Carleton. The Peer Helper Program is a way to develop great leadership skills, and it allows for personal growth. There are many experiences beyond and including learning support services, so see what works for you! You get back more than you give when you volunteer your time!
Submitted by Laura Kitts, a fourth-year psychology student.
Learn more about the Peer Helper Program at carleton.ca/seo/peer-helper-program