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UCC’s Peer Support Programme searches for new Peer Support Leaders – Could you be one?

In order to ease the transition into university life, which can be a major adjustment process for many, UCC runs a Peer Support programme in which current university students act as a point of information and support for a handful of incoming first years. Incoming students can contact their Peer Support Leader (PSL) at any point throughout their first year in college with any questions, queries or worries they may have about life at UCC. Any student interested in the programme can apply to become a PSL.

University Express had a chat with a current Peer Support Leader (PSL), Ahmed Khaled, about what it means to be a PSL and why students should get involved in the programme.

What do you think of the Peer Support programme here in UCC?

I love the peer support programme at UCC and honestly believe it’s an amazing addition to services available on campus. I’ve been actively involved for several years now and with that experience, I think I can confidently say that the transition to third level education is made much easier for many students due to the presence of this programme.

What does Peer Support do for students?

As most university students probably know for themselves, adjusting to life at university can be extremely difficult, especially for those who have long commutes or who might have moved out of home for the first time. The PSL programme acts as an aid by being a more personal point for information and support for such students. Every incoming first year student is linked with a trained Peer Support Leader who can act as the first port of call for any questions or worries regarding life on campus, from academic to social aspects.

Why did you become a Peer Support Leader?

I initially looked in to the Peer Support programme mostly out of curiosity after I was handed a flier during peer support’s annual recruitment drive back when I was in first year. I then decided to read up more on the programme. At the time I knew very little about the exact services that were provided but having recently joined university life myself, I liked the idea of passing on what I’ve learned from my experiences on to other students. 

Why should students apply to be a PSL?

Being a PSL is an extremely rewarding role. It allows you to meet countless amazing people and make many new friends, all while helping new students adjust to life on campus. Not to mention it looks great on your CV! 

What did you get out of becoming a PSL?

Another plus is the minimal amount of compulsory commitment, outside of monthly emails and orientation week (extremely fun time!). Any other work done is completely voluntary and so very easy to fit into hectic college schedules.

Peer Support recruitment is open now with applications closing at 5pm Friday, February 8th . Applications are open to all current students who will be registered in UCC for the 2019/20 academic year, this includes final years returning for a Postgraduate Degree. The online application form and more information on the programme can be found on their website www.ucc.ie/en/pass. An information evening on the programme will also take place at 6pm Tuesday, February 5th in ORB 156 if you wish to meet current Peer Support Leaders.