Mentors serve as coaches and guides as you make your transition from student to professional. As a Liberal Arts student, you have multiple options for connecting with mentors and getting a good start on connecting with the power of the Penn State alumni network.
The Liberal Arts Alumni Mentor Program
The Liberal Arts Alumni Mentor Program welcomes Liberal Arts students to apply to be connected with a Liberal Arts alumni mentor. Students are matched with alumni in a field related to their major. Mentors work with students to reflect on their experiences and goals, develop new skills, and network for the future. Preference is given to rising juniors and seniors, but rising sophomores are encouraged to apply. Contact Heather Baruch-Bueter (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions about the program.
The priority deadline for application has passed. Student applications are available here and will be accepted on a rolling basis. Please contact Heather Baruch-Bueter (email@example.com) with any questions.
Steps for Success
- Apply to the program by filling out the mentee application.
- Register for a Network Symplicity account if you don't have one.
- Visit the Career Enrichment Network in 101 Sparks with any questions about your application or materials.
- Mentee Handbook- This handbook has sample emails, tips about communication, and other resources for developing and enhancing your relationship with your mentor.
- Mentorship Compact- This document helps set goals and expectations with your alumni mentor. It will help you set meeting times, establish common goals, and provide structure for your relationship.
- Who can apply to the program?
The Alumni Mentor Program is open to all Liberal Arts students. However, preference in given to juniors and seniors. If you are a freshman or sophomore, and would like information about mentoring, visit us in the Career Enrichment Network (101 Sparks Building). We can provide resources to help you make connections until you are eligible to apply to the program.
- Can I choose my mentor?
No. The Alumni Relations Office and the Career Enrichment Network will work together to match students with mentors who have similar goals, objectives, and communication preferences. You will be matched with your mentor based on career interest, geographical location, and other factors.
- I am going to be really busy this semester. What is required of me as a mentee?
We require that students and mentors speak via phone, email, and/or Skype at least once a month. Beyond that, you and mentor will agree on a relationship and communication plan that works best for both of you. Thinking of your mentor relationship as a complement to your classes and other activities will help you set aside time to devote to it. However, if you feel you may not be able to make a commitment, think about utilizing other resources (listed below) until a semester where you will have more time to devote to your mentor relationship.
Alumni Association Resources
Penn State’s Alumni Association and Student Affairs LionLink matches "Student or Alumni Career Explorers" with "Alumni Career Coaches." Students can access LionLink via their Nittany Lion Career Network accounts, which are available through Career Services.
Some Academic Departments also have resources to connect alumni and current students. Your department may be able to provide you with contact information for an alumna or alumnus in your field. This is a good option for first and second-year students who are not yet eligible for the Alumni Mentor Program. Furthermore, students who are seeking a more informational interaction with alumni can speak to their department and/or the Career Enrichment Network for more information. Other options include department LinkedIn groups, Facebook pages, and guest speakers series that give you chances to connect with alumni from your specific major.
Comparative Literature majors can contact Courtney Robison (814-865-1352) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
English majors can make an appointment with Scott Smith (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
French majors can contact Carol Ritter (email@example.com) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
German majors can contact Courtney Robison (814-865-1352) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
Italian majors can email Patrick Tunno (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
Political Science majors can contact Angela Hill (email@example.com) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
Spanish majors can contact Carol Ritter (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss options about getting connected with alumni.
Schreyer Honors College students can take part in peer mentoring through SHC's Career Development Program. You will be paired with a mentor and three other students to help with career goals.
Other Liberal Arts majors can visit the Career Enrichment Network (101 Sparks) to speak with someone about getting in touch with an alumna/alumnus in their field.