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Careers and Enterprise

PASS – Peer Assisted Study Support

PASS is a subject-based mentoring scheme, run for first-year students by higher-year undergraduates.

What is the PASS scheme? 

PASS is an internationally renowned academic mentoring programme run by second and third year students acting as Student Mentors and Student Organisers. PASS currently runs in all academic schools but Medicine and Law. PASS aims to help first years successfully transition and settle into university by creating a safe learning environment in which  first year students can discuss study – related problems in a friendly, informal setting.

By being a PASS Mentor or Student Organiser, you will have the fantastic opportunity to share your passion for your subject area, strengthen your CV and gain evidential experience in areas such as organisation, people management, publicity and tailored communication. Additional developmental opportunities are also made available to both roles. Examples include, free training sessions with Teach First and option to participate at PASS Conferences hosted across the UK for free! This is all whilst supporting new first years overcome their hurdles and settle into their academic course successfully. Being a PASS Mentor or Organiser can also be useful for exploring your career options by allowing you to identify where your strengths and passions lie. The scheme itself is very well recognised by employers and has supported many graduates stand out in their applications and interviews post-graduation.


How will being a PASS mentor or PASS Student Organiser help me progress in my degree and career journey? 

Being a PASS Mentor/Student Organiser is proven to have significant academic and professional development for those involved.  

Mentors and Organisers have a unique opportunity to consolidate past study content and form a larger academic community. Teamwork is a significant take away from the role; Mentors and Organisers form positive relationships and regularly collaborate with student, academic and professional colleagues to develop and deliver sessions.

Working with diverse student groups enables Mentors and Organisers to further develop their soft skills, including negotiation, facilitation and general communication techniques as part of their role. Research shows those who Mentor often note improvements in self-esteem and self-confidence. 

In addition to the academic and professional skills development experienced , this activity will also go on your HEAR!


We are currently recruiting for PASS Mentors (voluntary position) and PASS Student Organiser (paid position) for the 2023/24 Academic Year.


PASS Mentors (voluntary)

PASS Mentors are voluntary positions open to students commencing 2nd and 3rd year undergraduate studies. Whilst the position is voluntary, a small £40 bursary is available annually for those who complete training and undertake the required number of sessions.  



Most schools run either 1 or 2 sessions for an hour per week. Student Mentors are expected to run a 1-hour session each week per semester, commencing from week 2 in Semester A. 

There will be two half day in person training sessions, held in early-mid September.  

Applications for PASS mentors are now open. Please find the role profile and application link below: 

Role description: PASS Mentor Role Description [PDF 368KB]

PASS mentor application form

The deadline for all mentor applications is 13 August 2023.


Saimah Sarinah Sultana, final year student at Queen Mary university studying English with French, reflects on her experience as a PASS mentor. 

A picture of a woman with a headscarf on.

'During my time at Queen Mary, I have been a volunteer PASS mentor for two years, offering weekly academic support sessions to first year students studying English Literature.

Having started my course during the pandemic, I could really sympathise with students who felt nervous about adapting to life at university after college. I wanted to be proactive and joined the PASS mentoring programme so that I could help first year students get the advice they need in a setting different from lectures and seminars. This is a feature that is unique to the peer-assisted support scheme and is what drew me to volunteer and become a PASS mentor.

My best memories as a mentor will always be the moments where I could see my mentees making real progress in their own studies. I particularly remember one student who came to every weekly session over the whole year. We spent a lot of time working through what they found most challenging in writing, planning, and researching for their assignment essays. In the end, the student received grades they were really pleased with and felt PASS played a significant role in their progress. They also applied to be a mentor themself which is a true testament of how important mentors are.

As a PASS mentor, I had the opportunity to develop a range of skills that will be significant in my future career as a teacher, such as leadership, public-speaking, and teamwork (to list a few!). I worked both independently and collaboratively with fellow mentors to facilitate successful sessions and I enjoyed preparing resources such as presentations and activities. I also fulfilled my role as a mentor alongside my own studies, which therefore helped me exercise time-management and organisational skills which are vital to professional life.

I truly think that the biggest hurdle that I experienced was confidence in myself, my knowledge, and my skillset to be able to be a mentor to other students. I want future mentors to know that you do not need to be the most self-confident person in the world, and that you will develop as an individual just as you offer your time helping others around you. Without a doubt, it is extremely fulfilling to know that your mentees will go on in their studies being able to set themselves up for success thanks to your mentoring.'


PASS Student Organisers (paid)

Student organisers are the pivot of the whole scheme as they are the main contact point for all the staff and students involved in PASS. Student Organisers lead and manage their team of mentors, organise the time and delivery of sessions and oversee the publicity of the scheme in their department.


More commitment is expected of organisers. Typically, Organisers provide at least 15 hours of support to their School/Institute PASS scheme per semester.

If successful, Organisers will need to attend core mentor training and student organiser training.

Applications for PASS Student Organisers are now open only to students from the following schools: 

School of Dentistry

Department of Drama 

School of Physical and Chemical Sciences 

Role description: PASS Student Organiser Job Profile [PDF 863KB]

PASS Student Organiser application form

The deadline for Student Organiser application for students from the above schools is now 14th August 2023. 


Roya Mohammed, a final year student at Queen Mary studying Psychology, reflects on her experience as a PASS Student Organiser.

A picture of a female student.

I have been the PASS Student Organiser for the School of Biological and Behavioural Sciences and am in my 4th year studying psychology.

Being a PASS Student Organiser has been incredibly rewarding. I have been able to share my knowledge and guide first year students on all aspects of their degree from learning revision techniques, to choosing elective modules. It feels great to be able to contribute to their journey and make the first year of university a little easier for them.

As a student organiser, I have developed my public speaking skills; at times we would have many mentees and I was never confident with speaking in front of people. Over time, I became more skilled in this and I thoroughly enjoy public speaking now! Similarly, this role has been incredibly helpful in developing my organisation skills. Being the only person to manage the programme for my school, I made sure to stay on top of tasks and scheduling sessions ahead of time, helping me in my personal growth.

The sense of fulfilment this role has given me makes it all worth-while and I have enjoyed spending my time in this way! If you are thinking of applying as a PASS Student Organiser, I cannot recommend it enough! Not only do you get to help students and meet new people, but it is a great chance to learn some tips from the other mentors, simultaneously helping you in your own academic and career progression.'


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