Alumni are playing an increasingly important role in ensuring that York students can gain access to insights and exclusive opportunities relating to professional work.
An alumni mentoring scheme introduced this summer matched students with mentors from a range of employers including The Home Office, Ernst & Young, Langleys Solicitors and Aviva. Other mentors included a barrister, a market research consultant and an entrepreneur. The joint initiative by the Careers Service and the Alumni Relations Office was also supported by the Students’ Union and the Graduate Students’ Association. Over 100 students applied for the opportunity to take place in the pilot, and many participants’ mentors helped to arrange shadowing and work experience placements. Many of the relationships have also extended beyond the initial five week scheme and into the summer vacation.
I am so glad to have been a part of this and look forward to hopefully contributing to it in the future as a mentor
Asiya, student participant
Alumnus Rob Lawrence, who works at the BBC and secured placements for his students, said, “The students and I spoke regularly, and I’m pleased to have been involved. The scheme was presented impressively at the launch event, and we’ve gone beyond the five weeks of initial contact.”
Jarrod Kay, formerly Commissioner of the High Security Prison Estate and now a consultant, said, “I gained personally from participating in the scheme, as well as the pleasure of helping bright students make their way in the world.”
Jessica, a student participant, said, “I've really enjoyed the scheme; it is something that every student should have the chance to do. I have learnt so much from the experience.”
Asiya, a fellow student involved in the programme, added, “I am so glad to have been a part of this and look forward to hopefully contributing to it in the future as a mentor.”
The programme will be available again in the Autumn Term. Students also have the opportunity to link with alumni informally through hundreds of Graduate Profiles across all sectors, available at www.york.ac.uk/careers/profiles.