As much as I gave to my mentees through mentoring, I received even more. When you know you have people who look up to you, you hold yourself to a higher standard. It has always been my belief that a person should lead by example, and the more I encouraged my students to take responsibility for their work, strengthen their relationships with family and friends, and give back to the community, the more I found myself improving those areas in my life as well. The more I listened to them and their concerns, the better listener I became to everyone else around me. As I watched them pursuing their goals with more passion each week, the more passionately I pursued my own.
I cannot fully express just how rewarding the experience has been for me. As a mentor, not only was I able to have a positive influence on three young men and become a role model in their lives, but also (quite unexpectedly) they had a positive influence on my life and became role models for me as well.