Wisdom comes with age and experience. The experience you’ve accrued over years of learning have provided you with the judgement and knowledge you apply in all of your future ventures. However, there comes a time when you lack the wisdom in whatever you are pursuing. This feeling can be daunting, especially when it comes to your career goals and lifelong aspirations. The road to accomplishment can be ridden with potholes and road blocks that can be intimidating, drawing you away from what you wish to achieve. The mentor is your guide during those tumultuous times. Mentors are more than role models. They shine the light in the dark tunnel of your dreams, guiding you along each step of the way.

Guidance is key. However, guidance alone is not what mentors provide. What may take years of experience and diligence to learn can be learned in a fraction of that time with a mentor. They come from all walks of life and help in all sorts of manners, whether it’s providing motivation, emotional support, advice, resources, teaching, etc. etc. The list goes on and on but there are challenges and rewards to finding the right mentor, or mentors, for you. I’ve been fortunate to find mentors in all aspects of my life, guiding me through academics, athletics, and any other difficulties in life. The key to a great mentorship is to use your mentor as a guide and a source of perspective, but not to make decisions for you. The path and choices you take should always be your conscious decisions. Nevertheless, a mentor who can provide their wisdom to help guide you to make whatever decision you feel is right, can be tremendously helpful in the long run. Invest some time to find an individual who’s already achieved the goals you wish to pursue. Let them know what your intentions are, short and long, and share your experiences. Actively engage and listen to the advice they tell you. You may encounter similar endeavors along your own path. As you develop a relationship with a mentor(s), you will come to improve in ways you’ve might not have expected, which may ultimately help you truly grow and fulfill your potential. This relationship is priceless, and as time goes on, you may even find yourself paying your dues forward to someone in the position you are in today.

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Nathan Delacth is a recent graduate from California Lutheran University where he majored in Biology. He plans to attend medical school where he can pursue an MD/MPH in hopes of serving his community and joining the small but growing number of Black physicians in the medical field. Growing up with immigrant parents from Cape Verde meant two identities in countries he both called home. As an American, his desire to uplift the communities that helped him become the person he is means actively fighting longstanding healthcare inequalities plaguing African American communities while joining the growing 5% of Black physicians in the US. As a Cape Verdean, conscious of the tribulations and widespread poverty, his goal to establish clinics on the island of Fogo means residents will have access to basic healthcare regardless of financial status. Making resources accessible to those who need them the most has always been at the forefront of his efforts to strive for progression. In his free time, he enjoys playing soccer with friends, spearfishing in Malibu, and mentoring others in options trading.

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