Arcadia Alumni

Alumni Career Mentor Program Guidelines & FAQs

Mission

The mission of the Alumni Career Mentor Program is to facilitate developmental relationships between Arcadia alumni and current students. The program's focus is to provide opportunities for participating alumni to offer professional expertise and diverse workforce perspectives while purposely developing a relationship based on mutual respect and sharing common interests and differing ideas with students who seeks to grow and understand the value of a mentor.

Guidelines for Mentor/Mentee Partnerships

This responsibilities listed below provide guidelines for Arcadia University-sanctioned mentor/mentee partnerships. The established principles outline the mentorship process and expectations. The University supports the relationship between the mentor and mentee for the duration of the formalized process. All communication that exceeds the pre-established guidelines for the program is under the sole direction of the individuals involved, independent of Arcadia University.

Responsibilities of Mentors
  • Commit time and energy to support a current Arcadia student and become familiar with the mentoring guidelines.
  • Help the mentee identify their academic and professional goals.
  • Give constructive feedback that can allow the mentee to grow personally and professionally.
  • Assist mentee in identifying how to access resources that will allow the student to build a professional network.
  • Promote skills development by providing a “workplace perspective” based on the mentee's established goals and objectives.
  • Encourage independence, an appreciation for differences, and reflect a positive attitude throughout the process.
  • Promise to communicate with the Office of Alumni Relations if they no longer wish to be part of the program or are having difficulties reaching or connecting with their mentee at alumni@arcadia.edu or 215-517-2566.
Responsibilities of Mentees
  • Commit time and energy to develop a relationship with an Arcadia alumnus/a and become familiar with the mentoring guidelines.
  • Rely on mentor for support and professional resource, but not necessarily for counseling or specific advising purposes.
  • Be open and committed to the mentoring process, and ask meaningful questions about their mentor’s career path and decision-making.
  • Accept feedback and learn from it, and implement new knowledge into their academic and professional habits.
  • Have realistic expectations of the mentoring relationship, understanding that networking does not always end with a job offer or other tangible takeaway.
  • Promise to communicate with the Office of Alumni Relations if they no longer wish to be part of the program or having difficulties reaching or connecting with their mentor at alumni@arcadia.edu or 215-517-2566.

Three Chats Over Coffee

The Alumni Career Mentor Program's "Three Chats Over Coffee" model offers an opportunity for alumni and students to connect three times at the beginning of their relationship for intentional conversations about academics, career, and shared interests. 

  • Alumni mentors and student mentees will be matched at the beginning of the fall semester based on mutual interests, major, career industry, and other points of interest
    • If you have an interest in being matched at another point during the academic year, please contact the Office of Alumni Relations at alumni@arcadia.edu
  • Mentors and mentees should meet three times over the course of the semester
  • Mentors and mentees should work together to determine the first date and time to connect, either face-to-face (in a coffee shop, on campus, or another public place that works for both) or remotely (via video chat or phone call)
  • Each of the guided three chats should last approximately 45 minutes
  • IMPORTANT! The goal is not to find a mentor/mentee who matches 100%
    • Mentors and mentees do not have to have the same major
    • No mentorship is "perfect," and instead should aim for connection and learning opportunities for both students and alumni

Learn more about the program and the questions you may pose during your "Three Chats Over Coffee."

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I decide which mentor I want to pick?

Things to consider when picking a mentor include: Do you care if the mentor is local and can meet in person? Do you want someone who works in your major? Or, would you like to talk to someone in an interest area that you aren’t fully exploring yet? Do you prefer someone who has similar hobbies as you? Would it be useful to have a mentor that lives close to you at home?

Do I have the keep the mentor (or mentee) that I originally pick (or that picked me)?

No, you don’t. We ask that mentor pairs try to get to know one another for at least a few months to develop a relationship, however, if you are not receiving a response to your attempts to communicate, or you just don’t feel like there is a connection between you and your mentor (mentee), you should notify Alumni Relations at alumni@arcadia.edu or 215-517-2566. We will either try to help facilitate the relationship, discern if there is a communication issue, and/or help to get you another mentor or mentee.

I feel awkward starting the first couple of conversations with my mentor or mentee; how do I get over that?

Remember, both sides may feel a little awkward the first couple of times you reach out. You are both worried that the other person may be busy, or may feel obligated to meet when you really don’t have the time. First, remember, you have Arcadia in common. Reach out—introduce yourself, agree to maybe do one of those ice-breakers you do at meetings or in class, to learn about each other. For example, tell a favorite story on a theme. We will also send you articles and conversation-starters each month, and before you know it, the communication will be so natural, you won’t even remember how it was in the beginning. However, if it doesn’t get easier to talk after a few months, then please let us know. We will try to help or see if we can make a better match.

I have reached out more than once and haven’t gotten a response. Should I reach out again? I feel rude.

We recommend you reach out at least twice before you contact us to tell us you cannot get a hold of your mentor or mentee. Sometimes people have emergencies or earmark an email or text so they can get back to it later, and then they forget. It isn’t personal. Not responding doesn’t necessarily mean the person isn’t interested, however, after the second lack of response, please notify the Office of Alumni Relations at alumni@arcadia.edu or 215-517-2566.

Should I only meet with my mentor or mentee at the events on the program calendar? 

Absolutely not. We will provide you places to meet up, not only with your mentor or mentees, but other mentors and mentees, but if you would rather meet on your own, we encourage that.

I really like two mentors; can I have two?

You can ask us. If the mentor is willing to take on another person, it is possible, but usually it is one mentor per customer. Mentors can have multiple mentees though.

I like my mentor, but he or she can never meet in person. Can I keep the remote mentor and get a new one that can meet?

Again, it doesn’t hurt to ask. We know that it is nice to meet in person, so we will do what we can to accommodate that request. That being said, remote mentors provide excellent sounding boards, as well.

My mentor/mentee can never come to an event, but I want to go anyway. Is that okay?

Absolutely. While we hope you will develop a great relationship with your mentor/mentee, we also hope you might make numerous connections through this program.

I have a suggestion how to make this program better. To whom should I send it?

Please send suggestions to the Office of Alumni Relations at alumni@arcadia.edu.