Case Study – Charlie Denham

Charlie Denham works in the legal team at Petrofac and has been volunteering with Career Ready as a mentor for just over a year. He says the reason why he became a mentor in the Career Ready programme was because it was exactly the type of programme that he believes he would have benefitted from whilst at school: “Unfortunately no such programme was available to me at the time. I’m therefore delighted to be able to help somebody make the most of the opportunities in front of them.”

During the programme Charlie was partnered with Joanne Nazareno a student from Kincorth Academy. They would meet on regular basis where he would provide guidance and support for her. Charlie advised Joanne on the best way to approach her studies as he was studying for a part-time diploma at the time “I explained the concept of smart studying and encouraged her to identify particular methods of studying that she felt were most beneficial to her.”

Charlie describes his time as a mentor on the programme as very beneficial “Beyond the CV-enhancing ‘development’-type benefits that have come with mentoring on the Career Ready programme, I have also really enjoyed participating in it and seeing my student develop. Seeing her confidence grow, particularly during her work placement, is great.”

Having done previous charity work Charlie had an idea of what was expected from him as a mentor on the programme but believes the Career Ready programme provides so much more he expected: “For me, this is what the Career Ready programme is really about – providing a bridge between school and working life is great, but helping a student make honest and well-informed decisions about their future is my goal.”

When asked if mentoring was something he would recommend he said, “I’d strongly recommend mentoring to others. You are able to develop skills that are directly relevant to your own professional development, whilst also helping somebody who is at an important stage in their life and under significant pressure with exams and further education/career choices. The programme also helps your company develop strong links with the local community and possibly identify future leaders at an early stage.”