Frequently Asked Questions   

What is mentoring?

Mentoring is an interactive learning and educational experience, provided for students to assist them in their personal and career development

  • To facilitate students’ professional development including exploring their career options and taking action in their transition into the workplace
  • To engage graduates of the School to contribute their time and expertise to assist students with their career options and potential
  • To match graduates (mentors) with 1-3 students (mentees) at the student’s request based on the initial meeting at the programme launch event
  • To encourage engagement of mentors and mentees throughout the year
  • To evaluate the programme in order to inform future developments

How do mentors benefit?

Graduates feel that as well as “giving something back” to the School and keeping in touch with College, they also benefit on a more personal level by:

  • Maintaining a link with their department, School and College
  • Developing and practicing their coaching skills
  • Sharing their professional knowledge and understanding
  • Gaining a real understanding of issues facing students

How do students benefit?

Students benefit enormously from the exchange of ideas with graduates and gain useful insights into optimising their time in College and how they can begin to manage their career development. Mentees can:

  • Learn from the experiences of the mentor enhancing their potential for personal development
  • Gain an insight into the workplace and links the academic environment to the world of work
  • The mentee’s confidence and self-awareness is enhanced through the mentoring process

Am I a suitable to be a mentor?

We are looking for graduates with ideally 3+ years professional experience who are willing to assist students to better equip themselves for the labour market in which they have expertise through support, assistance and guidance. Ideally the graduate is based in the greater Dublin region and can attend both the Launch Event. (Some schools will facilitate an e-mentor option)

How many students can I mentor?

We recommend supporting 1-3 students. If you are matched with more than one student, we encourage you to meet the students as a group.

How much time will be involved?

Based on last year’s programme, we suggest that mentors allow for approximately 10 hours. This includes attending the Launch Event and a further 3 meetings over the course of the year with your student/s which would be approximately 1-2 hours each and then some time for answering emails/reviewing CVs.

What is the launch event?

Prior to meeting students, graduates will meet each other for approximately 30 minutes beforehand to get an overview of mentoring from the Careers Adviser, Global Officer, and academic staff. Learn more about the Schools participating in the GradLink Mentor Programme.

We hope that 15-20 graduates will briefly introduce themselves to students and give an overview of their sector of employment/ job role. Students will also receive a booklet with the profile of all participating graduates. Each graduate will be “posted” to a particular sector area of the room and students will get an opportunity to circulate and network. A range of sectors will be represented by graduates at this reception launch.

When is the launch event for my School?

Please visit the individual School page to see the launch date, the list of participating schools is available here.

How will I be matched with a student?

A matching process will take place after the event based on the students’ requests and rationalising this request. Mentors will be introduced, by email, to their mentees after the launch. If there is a number of mentees in a mentor’s group, a lead mentee will co-ordinate meetings between the group and the mentor.

What topics should I discuss with my mentee(s)?

Topics that may be of interest to students include:

  • Researching and exploring particular job roles and sectors
  • Deciding on what to do after College
  • Reviewing a CV/LinkedIn profile
  • Practicing job interviews, networking
  • Introducing to other professional colleagues
  • Finding jobs not advertised

Entirely optional:

  • Securing a day/half day work shadowing to get an insight into a job/sector
  • Work on a project at the mentor’s company for experience (no payment to be sought)

Who should I talk to if I have any questions or issues?

Please get in touch with the contact listed on your School’s webpage (visit this page for a list of schools involved)
Or alternatively email the alumni office at alumni@tcd.ie if you have any questions.