Being a part of the freshman academy program at BYU, right from the start of the semester I was assigned a Peer-Mentor. Initially, I never quite understood why a peer-mentor was important. Throughout high school I had taken all the regular class, did all my assignments, handed-in all my papers, worked hard on all my exams, it had all gone smoothly without any mentor. What was so different in college?

In the past semester, I’ve come to realize the importance of having a mentor and now, I consider it extremely essential. College is the pivotal moment in our lives. Its the one chance to make something exceptional out of yourself. What we gain here prepares us for the rest of our life. A mentor is one who guides you through this treacherous path. Thousands of questions that loom in our mind: what classes to take and when to take them? Which professors will be invested in you? When and where to intern? How to make the most out of the best years of your life?

A mentor can be anyone who gives you the best advice, who guides you and who wants to see succeed. It can be a professor, a senior, a counselor, a TA, a sibling, a parent, a professional, a co-worker, a classmate or just a friend. My mentor is my really good friend, a Pakistani finance major in the Marriot School of Management who, just like me, had no siblings or relatives when he came to BYU. As a non-LDS student, he also felt the transition in adapting to the unique Utah culture. But gradually, learnt to make the most out of it. In his freshman year, he submitted a paper “Islam and Mormonism” in the Religious Symposium and won first place. I have benefit tremendously from his guidance.

Being a mentor isn’t all about studying, I occasionally do the most random things with my mentor, like shooting hoops or throwing football at midnight, movie-marathons etc. I believe that in college, it is very important to have a person you can consult if you have any doubts, who you can call anytime you need help or even hang-out and have a good time.