In its continuing Mentor Spotlight series The Temple Bell is highlighting mentor Jameson Ford. Nominated by his student Kurt, who tells us he was “initially apprehensive about having a mentor younger than me, his (Jameson’s) knowledge and experience of the work quickly put me at ease and it has been a joy to watch him grow through his studies and life’s trials and tribulations as well. Being a very distant student I am inspired to work hard and feel encouraged to strive forth, exploring my own unique abilities despite the limitations my situation has to offer. Most importantly Jameson is not afraid to ask for help when unsure of something and is a great role model for my future mentoring.”
Based on Kurt’s nomination we asked Jameson to fill us in a little about himself and his style of mentoring:
TB: What is some of your history? Tell us a little about yourself, and how did you come to study with the Temple of Witchcraft?
JF: Originally from Portland, ME, I currently reside in central Maine, where I live with my beautiful son Conure and two rats. I made the move north to attend the University of Maine, from which I graduated in 2014 with a BA in biopsychology and minors in neuroscience and dance, and stayed in the area for a job opportunity. I now work on the business side of the biomedical industry as a digital marketer for a genomic research and development organization. On the side, I also teach dance to children and adults, primarily jazz, contemporary, and barre. While I enjoy my jobs, witchcraft is my passion, my motivator, and where I feel truly at home.
I’ve had a deep interest in world religions from a young age, and after discovering scrying at age 11, I found witchcraft. After happening upon Christopher’s book Sons of the Goddess in my teen-hood, I immediately knew I had found the correct path for me. Fast-forward a few years, and I am now a High Priest at age 23.
TB: How long have you been active in the Temple of Witchcraft? How long have you been a mentor?
JF: I am a recent graduate of WV, and have been mentoring WI and WII for around 4 years. Currently, I am also the moderator for WI.
TB: What is your philosophy for mentoring?
JF: While mentoring and teaching share many similarities, they hold distinct differences. For me, mentoring is serving as a support system in any way the individual student requires. They are taught the material in class, and left to experience, learn, and master it on their own. This can sometimes be tough, and that’s where mentors come in. I provide encouragement when they struggle and accolades when they succeed. I avoid lecturing, but rather pose questions so that students may reflect more deeply on their own work.
TB: Any advice for new mentors or students?
JF: For new mentors, be sure to listen and do your best to understand the needs of your students; some require more encouragement, while others prefer more independence. Don’t take it personally if a student drops out of the class; we are all on our own journeys through this life, and it’s highly unlikely their decision had anything to do with your mentoring. Do the best you can and be confident in your work.
For new students, don’t be afraid to ask questions or let your mentor know how you are feeling about your work! We are here to support you in any way we are able.