Paying It Forward

When ‘Kiera’ Shi Yanhong (TCFS 2014) met mentor Imogen Smith-Waters (TC 2011) at the University of Melbourne’s Student Union (UMSU) Women’s Mentoring Network they had no idea of their Trinity connection. Little did Kiera know, she would soon be working alongside fellow Foundation Studies alumna Eileen Goh (TCFS 1996) at VincentCare Victoria.

Kiera, originally from China, moved to Melbourne in 2014 to undertake the Foundation Studies program at Trinity and is now studying a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and Economics at the University of Melbourne.

During her time at the College, Kiera developed a passion for volunteering and has worked with The Salvation Army, Oaktree, Down Syndrome Victoria and is currently interning once a week at VincentCare Victoria.

Imogen, a former Residential College student, joined the mentoring network as a way to give back after all the support she had received while in residence.

‘I wanted to help a younger student by sharing my uni experiences and passing on the great advice I was fortunate to have received from my mentors. Mentoring Kiera has been a fun and rewarding experience from which I have also gained a lot,’ Imogen said. 

This is when she met Kiera, though it was not until they had met several times did they realise they shared a common alma mater in Trinity College.

Kiera received many tips from Imogen about things such as goal setting, time management, handling stress and interview preparation.

These are tips Kiera has been able to pass on when she became a Senior Buddy for a Foundation Studies October intake student.

Kiera had not heard of VincentCare until she came along to the ‘Volunteer for a Difference’, organised by Trinity’s Careers and Alumni Office.

It was at this session, Kiera met with Eileen Goh, the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) for VincentCare Victoria.

Eileen herself began as a volunteer at VincentCare, and feels strongly about the importance of volunteering and giving back to the community. She says the most rewarding aspect of her job is the direct impact she has on the clients.

‘When you hear of the real-life cases and how we’ve [VincentCare] managed to help them find secure accommodation and get their life back on track. We do this by helping them getting back into the community, looking for a job and getting the further education they need.’

Eileen recommends volunteering in the not-for-profit sector as a fantastic way for students to develop new skills and experience in addition to what they are learning in the classroom.

Above all else, she believes passion in what your organisation is trying to achieve is the key to ultimately being successful in any career.

To find out about upcoming events or to find out more about volunteering opportunities, visit the Careers and Alumni Office's events page or Facebook page.

01 Mar 2017
Category: People