Danish students are constantly affected by an ambiguous discourse from society; on one hand the Danish politicians are implementing politics encouraging students to complete their studies in a timely fashion, on the other hand students are witnessing a huge level of unemployment and facing difficult times on the job market. How this discourse affects students’ transition from studying to starting their work life is what initially motivated this thesis. At the CareerCenter at Syddansk Universitet they lead a mentoring program connecting students in the last part of their education and newly graduated candidates with experienced people from the business life. Through phenomenological and qualitative research of five students from the program, who all experienced the mentoring relation as giving, the thesis tries to investigate how the use of mentoring can help students in their transition to at working life. The process with a mentor is viewed as a learning process. Different learning perspectives are present; partly the process of scaffolding, as explained by Wood et al. (1976), partly the one of a transformative learning process, as explained primarily by Illeris (2013). The transformative learning process includes two people joining in a trusting relationship where there is room for critical reflection. As a result of this, the five students all went through a process where they questioned and changed their assumptions, which lead to changes in their identities. These changes made the students ready for handling new situations such as graduating and starting a work life. As another view on the mentoring relationship, other aspects that might lead to the students’ positive experiences are offered. This includes the role of the mentoring program’s execution and preparation of the mentors and mentees, the existing resources of the students, and the importance of the mentor’s availability. A comparison with the therapeutic relation is also involved. Lastly the thesis includes an ideological yet applicable discussion of how transformative learning could be incorporated deliberately in the mentoring program at the CareerCenter. The empirical findings of the thesis show, that it can be discussed if the mentoring relationship can be perceived as a transformative learning process or not. It is concluded that either way being a part of this sort of relation seems to be rewarding for students in their transition from studying to working – some final thoughts on how this can be used proactively in the work with mentoring programs are offered.
|Educations||MSc in Psychology, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||240|