The Old Diocesan Issue5 Mar2020 - Page 43



MENTORSHIP
MENTOR POWER
In parts I and II of our three-part dive into modern education,
we discussed the challenges of schooling today and the need for
a rounded approach. In this final instalment we talk to three ODs,
with focus on Hilton Houghton’s personal and work experience, to
explore the next logical step: extending the education of our boys
beyond matric, through university and into the workplace, with
an increasingly powerful tool for the modern age – mentorship
T
he word mentor means “wise
guide”, as some of our older
ODs schooled in Greek and
the Classics may recall, being
derived from the character Mentor,
the adviser of young Telemachus
in Homer’s Odyssey. Telemachus
was the son of Odysseus himself,
and so we see that the power of
mentorship has been known to
heroes and princes since the
beginning of recorded story-telling.
But while countless ODs can attest
to the positive influence of older
ODs in their life, whether at school,
university or in the workplace,
mentorship within the greater
Bishops community has seldom
been anything but ad hoc and
informal – until recently.
In 2014, the Bishops Mentorship
programme was launched in
the UK for the UK branch, “an
important and symbolic step
towards keeping the ODU relevant
and useful”, as Nicky Bicket, the
programme director, noted in
the first issue of The Old Diocesan.
Where previously the Union had
been the Rolodex that kept ODs
in touch with one another and
the school, today we have the
internet and social media to
take networking into the next
dimension. The new mentorship
programme provides existential
meaning for the Union, an
essential pillar in the structure of
the modern Union of “ODs helping
ODs”. In 2016 it was extended to
ODs around the world.
The timing was prescient. For
one, the mentorship programme
enables the concept of Bishops
For Life to extend practically and
seamlessly past matric and into
the real world, a key differentiator
for potential parents comparing
school fees in these depressed
economic times. And second, and
more relevant here, mentorship
THE OLD DIOCESAN | 41





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