In 2015 we established a formal industry mentoring program between SYN volunteers and SYN alumni for SYN’s young people to develop a deeper understanding of the media industry, explore career pathways and gain relevant and practical advice for entering the industry.

For our pilot program last year, we selected ten of our volunteers to participate in the mentoring program and matched them with mentors with relevant media experience in the areas of interest relevant to each mentee.

The mentoring relationship continued for a period of six months, with the option of mentors and mentees continuing this relationship after the formal mentoring period ended.

Reasons for volunteers becoming involved in the mentoring program were varied:

“I aimed to build my network within the media industry and learn more about the media industry outside of community media,” one volunteer said.

“I aimed to get a bit more of a focus on what I was doing career-wise, and getting help with applying for work,” another volunteer said.

When asked about the strengths of the mentoring program, 2015 mentees said:

The encouraging and self strengthening tools given to mentees – you realise you can actually break into the industry with the right attitude and knowledge”

“Access to people who have been where you are and navigated their careers successfully. The informal relationship is a great dynamic”

“It helps you improve in the areas only someone established in the industry could know and then also provide you with a valuable contact”

“It’s exciting as an aspiring media maker to talk with someone successfully working in the field.”

Eleven volunteers began the mentoring program for 2016 and were matched with mentors from a diverse range of fields including ABC, Al Jazeera, triple j, KISS FM and more.

Expressions of interest for the next mentoring program period will open early 2017. If you’re interested in being part of the 2017 program as a mentor, email [email protected]