Alumni-Student Mentoring Program | Mentors | Alumni Engagement | NC State ISE

Mentor Guidelines

Alumni mentors must be graduates of the Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial Engineering and be willing to serve voluntarily.

As far as time commitment expectations, it depends on how often you and your student decide to meet for mentoring discussions. If you choose to meet monthly, it would mean around six mentoring talks. Additionally, we will ask that you complete two surveys during the year to help us ensure our program is effective and continuously improves.

There is no requirement to be near campus for in-person mentoring sessions. Phone or video-chat mentoring sessions are viable alternatives.

If you find the match to be less than ideal, or that the student is not fulfilling their expectations, you may formally end the relationship by notifying the student that you do not wish to continue with the mentoring relationship. Additionally, you should tell our academic advisor, Wendy Blue | wcblue@ncsu.edu | 919.515.5413, that the relationship has ended.

Mentor Roles and Responsibilities

A mentor is someone who should work with their ISE students. Steven Spielberg once said that “the delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image, but giving them the opportunity to create themselves.”

Mentors prepare to cover some of the following:

  • Ask questions to help develop your and your student’s understanding of a situation or problem presented by the student
  • Provide information, knowledge and share informal networks
  • Provide advice on career interest and development
  • Offer different perspectives
  • Provide support and encouragement
  • Provide insight into your work and career
  • Offer guidance and advice in regards to career qualifications
  • Be a sounding board
  • Be a critical friend
  • Encourage self-reflection
  • Help students identify areas for development

As a mentor, you will have the opportunity to use your experience and knowledge to support your student’s development. However, the responsibility for making things happen and putting plans into action lies primarily with the student, not with the mentor. 

Once student and mentor registration is complete, the ISE Department will conduct a matching process to best connect students and mentors based upon career and industry interests and experience. When the matching process is complete, you and the student will receive an email with each other’s contact information.

Once you receive your match notification, it is the student’s responsibility to make the first contact within two weeks.