Be a Mentor

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Career mentors are meaningful work mentors...  APPLY NOW

Concordia’s Meaningful Work Mentoring Program matches career professionals like you with students as part of a class assignment.

The goals of the program are to:

  1. Introduce students to the value of professional relationships
  2. Help students build social networks while in college
  3. Build value in pursuing informal mentoring relationships while in college outside of the class assignment
  4. Develop career readiness skills

FAQ’s

What is the time commitment?

Students and mentors are matched over a 10-12 period and meet at least 3 times in person, virtually, or by phone.  In the fall 2017 pilot program a few mentors and student mutually agreed it would be beneficial to continue the partnership beyond the course assignment, but it is not required.  Mentors complete a self-directed online training and attend a mentoring meet-up with the students prior to being matched.  Mentors are invited to attend 1-2 other campus events during the semester and a one day retreat each summer.

Why is a profile on the universities Handshake system required to be a mentor?

Students identify potential mentors by viewing your mentor Handshake profile before and after the mentoring meet-up event.  Your profile should include your photo and it should be highly detailed and include information about your expertise.  Students will make a request directly in the system.  The vocation and professional development office will confirm the match. 

May I opt in and out of the program?

Yes.  Mentors can choose to opt in and out each semester.  It is highly encouraged that you hide your mentor Handshake profile if you are opting out for a semester or longer.

Who are the students in the program?

Students in the fall 2017 pilot program were senior Business majors enrolled in a capstone course, and second semester freshman enrolled in an Environmental Science career exploration course.  The spring 2018 pilot will be embedded into a Concordia distinctive Leadership course where the students are mostly sophomores and juniors that span across all majors. 

What is the matching process?

You will complete your mentor profile on Handshake noting how many students you are able to mentor at one time.  Then, you will attend the mentoring meet up to network with all of the students in the program.  After the networking event students make a request in the Handshake system.  Requests are honored only if the mentor’s profile indicates availability.   In the fall 2017 pilot the mentoring meet up was the most successful indication of a good match where both the mentor and student agreed it would be a beneficial partnership prior to the student making the request. 

What training and support is provided for mentors?

Mentors are enrolled in an online self-directed training course.  Training consists of 5 modules with readings, videos, and forum discussions.  The purpose of the forums ar to connect mentors virtually and provide a space for ongoing support for the mentor community.  The course also provides career readiness resources like an interviewing guide, job search tools, and other valuable print outs for mentors to use with their student.

What specific objectives or goals should mentors accomplish with the student?

We want the student’s professional network to grow.  As a mentor you are considered a sponsor.  Mentors should ask “big questions” that draw out aspirations and interests.  You will be able to make additional connections with other professionals in your network as you learn more about your protege.  Secondly, as part of the course assignment your student will be required to complete a career readiness task such as a resume, mock interview, or job shadow.  Your role is to coach the student through completion of the task.  Your first meeting together should finalize the goals of the partnership, including the activities you will work on together to complete the task.  

How often am I supposed to meet with my student protégé?

You should meet at least 3 times over the 10-12 week period.  In the fall 2017 pilot some partnerships met once a week in person while others met 3 times by phone.   Your and your protege's schedules are the biggest barriers to building a partnership.  Calendar your mentoring sessions up front and make a commitment with each other to adhere to the agreed upon schedule.

What if my student is not engaged with the program?

Notify the vocation and professional development director, Randa Scott randa.scott@concordia.edu with any issues that arise.  In the pilot programs we are studying various factors of mentoring relationships.  We plan to make adjustments as needed to ensure a successful match and completion of the intended goals of the overall program.  Your informal feedback and response to program surveys are both important to us. 

Yes, I want to be a MW Mentor.  What are my next steps?

  1. Complete the mentor application.
  2. Build your online mentor profile

 

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