We welcomed one of our ex-students, Meena Bashier, as a mentor for Ashbourne's Engineering Programme. While at Ashbourne, Meena achieved outstanding grades (A*A*A*A). He currently studies Civil Engineering at Imperial College London, which is only a 10 minute walk from Ashbourne.
This morning Meena gave an introductory lesson to 11 students, a mix of Year 12 and Year 13, who are part of our Engineering programme and hope to be studying the subject at university. We had a chance to catch up with Meena and get to know what kind of work he'll be doing with our students and what it has been like for him to be back at Ashbourne.
How was your first session today and what did you discuss?
"Our first lesson was great! We had 11 students. It was an introduction to Ashbourne's Engineering Programme. It was a chance for us to talk about each student's university destination and the predicted grades they have for themselves, not so much what they have been seeing in their mocks."
How will you be helping the students during the year?
"I'll be leading the course alongside Sean Pillai. I'll mainly be mentoring the students and being their point of contact whenever they need me. I was in their position last year, so I know exactly what they must be feeling... anxiety, nervousness, unsure about so many things... but Ashbourne was always really supportive and helped me in every way possible, so I'm happy I can be here to help. I'll be helping the students when it comes to enlightening them about the different branches and subjects they can study within engineering."
How has your time at Ashbourne helped you achieve your goals?
"Ashbourne was so supportive while I was a student. I felt supported not only by the teachers but by the administration staff as well. My experience at Ashbourne was amazing."
How does it feel coming back to Ashbourne, only now as a mentor?
"It feels like coming back home! I'm so happy to be able to come back and help other students. As I said, I was in their shoes this time last year, so I know exactly how they must be feeling. It makes a difference to have an ex-student there to support you since I went through the same process only a few months ago. Having someone to talk to, who has recently been through this university process, truly helps."
‘Meena was one of Ashbourne's most inspirational students in his A2 year with us. Whilst juggling his responsibilities as Student President he also worked tremendously hard throughout the year, gaining an outstanding set of results (A*A*A*A). Meena maintained a highly positive attitude throughout his time at Ashbourne, and his exceptional work ethic and enthusiasm for improving influenced other students in his year group to do the same. Meena now reads Civil Engineering at Imperial College, one of the best universities in the world for this discipline. He has returned to Ashbourne to inspire the next generation of engineers from the College and provide wisdom from his experiences as an A-Level student and now a university undergraduate.’ - Sean Pillai, Deputy Head of Year 13
‘Meena is the kind of student we want at Ashbourne. When he started and told me he wanted Imperial for Civil Engineering, I honestly thought it would be a stretch. But Meena is a dedicated, hard-working student, who excelled academically and persevered to reach his goals. He was a great addition to the student body, a great student council president, and a dedicated student. Meena has now come back to run the Engineering Programme, alongside Sean Pillai, as an undergrad Civil Engineering student at Imperial,and we couldn't be happier to have him. Meena is a true Asher, whether he likes that term or not!’ - Lee Kirby, Director of Studies