Alumni-student mentoring beyond borders

Published: September 3, 2013

New online platform connects students with MIT Sloan’s global alumni network

The MIT Sloan Alumni-Student Mentoring Program will match MIT Sloan alumni from all over the world with MIT Sloan graduate students beginning this fall using an online platform. This program will help students gain new insight, connections, and career guidance.

Developed over the past two years by the School’s Office of External Relations in partnership with the Dean’s Student Advisory Council and Student Senate, the program is designed to provide students with an opportunity to connect with alumni within MIT Sloan’s vast alumni network from the moment they arrive on campus. The online platform uses profile data to suggest mentor matches for students from different backgrounds, class years, programs, regions, and industries. Once connected, the alumni mentor and the student mentee will work together to define their relationship—for example, how often the pair will keep in touch—so that it best suits their needs.

“Since the day I arrived at MIT Sloan, students have been requesting alumni mentoring. This program will not only provide this opportunity to our students, but will do so in a way that is easy and accessible by using the online matching tool.” said Donna Russell, senior associate director of alumni relations and annual giving.

“Meaningful mentorship has long been limited by geographic barriers,” said Kathy Hawkes, director of alumni relations and annual giving. “At a place like MIT Sloan, with more than 22,000 alumni in 90 countries, this is a real challenge. This new program will provide our students with an opportunity to have a life-changing experience with a mentor regardless of where they are in the world. This is very exciting.”

“We expect people will connect over the phone, through email and Skype, and will possibly meet in person,” Russell said.

Students and alumni can sign up for the program by filling out the online application, emailing mitsloanmentorprogram@mit.edu, or calling 617-253-1557.

Alumni can volunteer until Thursday, Sept. 5. Students must apply by Wednesday, Sept. 11.

More than 600 alumni worldwide have already expressed interest in the program, Russell said.