With an alumni base of nearly 10,000 members, the School of Journalism & Mass Communication is in a unique position to provide professional assistance to students. One of the ways the school helps students connect with alumni is through a mentoring program sponsored by the SJMC Alumni Society. For the last three decades, the SJMC alumni board has made hundreds of mentoring matches, connecting SJMC juniors and seniors with professionals willing to share their experiences.
Students first attend a mandatory information meeting and fill out an online application. After reviewing students’ interests and expectations, members of the Alumni Society Board start making matches.
For each student, we try to find a professional who has a job in a field that is of interest to the student. The mentorship isn’t an internship, nor is it intended to lead to a job at the mentor’s workplace. It is simply a chance to talk candidly, to learn about life after college and to begin that transition from college life to the “real world.” When the matchmaking process is complete, mentors and students attend a kick-off event. After that, it’s up to the pairing to plan activities. Some pairs meet twice a month, others meet less frequently. In most cases, the student will tour the mentor’s workplace. Other popular mentorship activities include resume writing, job search planning, portfolio/tape critiquing and networking. It is not unusual for some relationships to endure as students earn their degrees, seek employment and begin their careers.
The program is open to junior and senior SJMC majors only.
See the Mentor Program timeline and information about what to expect from the program.
In order to apply to the Alumni Mentor Program students must attend an information session. All information sessions have passed for the 2014-15 school year.
Sarah and Chad
Johnny and Cole
We asked mentors and mentees who have participiated in the program to give advice to those just embarking on the program. Here's what they said.