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How Peer Tutoring and PASS Leadership Transformed Me Personally and Professionally

May 17, 2023

Looking back on this school year, I can confidently say that working as a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader at Ontario Tech's Student Learning Centre has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. During the fall semester, I had the opportunity to guide and support students as a Peer Tutor, and in the winter semester, I was a PASS leader for the Foundations in Clinical Biochemistry course. Through these experiences, I learned a lot about myself and developed many valuable skills that I can use in my future academic, career, and personal pursuits. In this post, I'll be sharing some of the most valuable talents I acquired through my employment. 

Time-management Skills

Working as both a Peer Tutor and a PASS Leader, I was able to hone my time-management skills. As a Peer Tutor, my schedule was always fluctuating as students could book appointments up to 24 hours before a session, which meant I had to constantly stay on top of my schedule to ensure I had enough time to prepare for each appointment. (Let's just say my planner became my BFF!). I also had to factor in other commitments on days when I had tutoring sessions, forcing me to budget my time carefully. The same was true when I worked as a PASS Leader. Given only an hour and a half to prepare for each group review session, I had to work quickly and efficiently to ensure everything was ready to go. Overall, my experience as a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader taught me the value of time-management skills and how they can make all the difference in achieving success.

Organizational Skills

My roles at the Student Learning Centre have greatly improved my organizational abilities. As a Peer Tutor, I had to consistently check the Student Life Portal for appointments, and since I had to book and prepare for multiple appointments with students from various courses and schedules, I developed a reliable system for keeping track of everything (big shoutout to my planner again!). Additionally, when preparing for PASS sessions, I had to ensure that my lesson plans aligned with the order of lectures in the course. Overall, my experiences as a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader have emphasized the importance of staying organized, and I'm confident that these skills will serve me well in the future.

Active Listening Skills

Active listening skills were a crucial part of my roles at the Student Learning Centre. As a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader, I had to make sure I attentively listened to students when they were asking questions or explaining concepts to me. Actively listening to their questions and concerns helped me understand what they needed help with and allowed me to give them exactly what they needed. Furthermore, paying close attention when students were answering a question helped me pick up on what students understood about an idea and if there are any areas they need to review more. Developing active listening skills has undoubtedly been a valuable asset in my academic and professional pursuits!

Working with Other Students

As a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader, I interacted with students frequently, which helped me develop rapport-building skills. I learned how to ask questions that would gauge students' understanding of a concept effectively. Moreover, I had to correspond with students regularly via email, which allowed me to develop professionalism in my written communications. Ultimately, my experience as a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader taught me valuable communication skills that I can carry on to my future career.

In conclusion, my time as a Peer Tutor and PASS Leader has been incredibly rewarding. Through these roles, I've developed valuable skills in time management, organization, active listening, and communication. I'm excited to take these skills with me as I continue in my academic and professional pursuits. I encourage you to reflect on your own work experiences and the skills you learned through them. I'm pretty sure I'll never forget the rush of preparing for a PASS session with only an hour and a half to spare! 

By Victoria Matheou