The Ramapo Alumni Mentoring Program (RAMP) is built on the strong sense of community of which Ramapo is proud to nurture. The mentoring relationship can take many forms, from limited email or telephone conversations to personal interactions on a short or long term basis. Most important, a mentoring relationship is built on trust and the willingness to help and the ability to listen and learn. RAMP utilizes alumni as a trusted resource for students and recent graduates. Ramapo alumni are successful in many fields and positions and can assist with career and industry exploration, networking, and transitioning to work life upon graduation.
Learn how you can participate by selecting your role.
Alumni – You can make a difference in the life of a Ramapo student or recent graduate. RAMP is a program that allows you to reconnect with the Ramapo community and provide a service to others. Mentors give advice, answer questions, and help to educate young professionals achieve their goals. A successful mentoring relationship brings people together for mutual learning and personal and professional growth. Mentors build stronger communication and leadership skills and gain personal satisfaction, and a renewed sense of purpose and commitment to their field, career, or industry. As a mentor, you will have the ability to manage your own account online and determine how many mentee contacts you would like and how you would like to be contacted. Sign up to be a mentor today and support the work of the Ramapo community in preparing students and alumni to be competitive and successful in the world beyond the campus.
Register online at www.myinterfase.com/ramapo/mentor and complete the Mentor Profile. The profile will include your name, contact information, position, industry, brief job description, academic major, extracurricular, volunteer work, and professional affiliations. Once your profile is approved and activated mentees will be able to search the database and find you.
Guidelines for Mentors
Communication –Mentors and mentees are encouraged to determine up front how often they expect to communicate with each other and the manner in which they will do so. Once or twice a month is recommending but not required. Conversations may occur over the phone, via Skype (or similar software), email, and/or in person when possible. Both mentors and mentees are expected to return calls and e-mails in a timely manner (e.g. within two business days). If a mentoring conversation must be cancelled it is expected that you and your mentee will do your best to communicate in advance of the meeting and reschedule.
Commitment –Mentors should be clear about what they are willing to do to help their mentee. Mentors are not expected to offer an internship or a job. Let the mentee know you are willing to speak to provide advice, information, resume review, practice interview, etc.
Goals –Mentors should help mentees set clear and realistic goals about their personal, academic and career decisions. Often mentees have broad objectives but need help identifying specific goals and the action steps required to achieving it. Remind them to set SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely) goals for success. It is also important for a mentor to think about their expectations and goals for the relationship.
Feedback –Deliver feedback in a candid and thoughtful manner. Be open and facilitate reflection and self-assessment as you help your mentee work through career related issues and concerns. Help the mentee learn to receive and respond to criticisms and performance evaluations, and to use these experiences to better understand their strengths and weaknesses as they relate to their career goals. Utilize active listening and try to develop thought provoking questions to help your mentee grow personally and professionally.
Assess. Revisit your commitment and goals for the relationship. Discuss them with your mentee and make adjustments or changes if necessary. If you decide you no longer wish to participate in RAMP please contact the Career Center at 201-684-7444. We will inactivate your profile.
Students and Recent Graduates –Mentors are advisors, teachers, role models and friends that support your goals and help you to grow and develop personally and professionally. The RAMP program is available to connect you with alumni who are willing to serve and work with Ramapo students and recent graduates. Consider the many questions you might have about your future and how your academic career will connect to a specific occupation, career field or industry. Selecting to work with a mentor can help you find answers. Are you curious about what skills you need to develop? What internships will be most beneficial for you? Perhaps there is a specific company you are interested in and would like to learn more about the culture and opportunities that exist there. We invite you to take advantage of this program and connect with an alumnus through RAMP.
Search for a mentor through Handshake. From your home page you will be able to search for registered mentors who have allowed for contact and view mentor profiles. A mentor profile may include major, extracurricular activity, sports and intramurals, current employer, employment history, volunteer work, and professional affiliations. Select and contact a mentor to ask career related questions. You will be able to reach out to 6 contacts each month. Visit the Career Center and meet with your Career Advisor for more information on how to take advantage of this resource.
Guidelines for Mentees
Communication –Ask your mentor how often they are willing to communicate with you and how they prefer to do so. Conversations may occur over the phone, via Skype (or similar software), email, and/or in person. Return calls and emails in a timely manner –within 2 business days. If you must cancel a mentoring session be sure to do so well in advance of the scheduled date/time and reschedule promptly. If you no longer feel you need to reschedule let your mentee know.
Commitment –Your mentor may make suggestions for you to act on, provide referrals, or give you assignments to complete before your next meeting. Express your willingness to do so and complete these assignments or tasks promptly. Show your mentor you are trustworthy and willing to go above and beyond. Mentors are not expected to offer an internship or a job. Let the mentor know if you are seeking a long term relationship or wish to ask a question only.
Goals –Set clear and realistic goals for your personal, academic and career success. Your mentor will help you with this. Follow the acronym SMART (Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely) when setting goals. Goals should be reassessed and adjusted as you move forward in your career.
Feedback –Your mentor will seek to provide you with feedback in candid and thoughtful manner. Listen carefully and with an open mind. Be willing to ask direct questions about your strengths and weaknesses. Always let your mentor know what you have learned and how it is helpful for you. Expect your mentor to ask thought provoking questions. Many require time to reflect and your mentor will understand that. Be sure to say thank you to your mentor for their time and expertise.
Assess –Revisit your commitment and goals for the relationship. Discuss them with your mentee and make adjustments or changes if necessary. As you move into your professional life continue to seek mentors within your organization or industry. Some companies have formal programs established to help new employees learn the job and acclimate to the culture. Use what you have learned through the RAMP program and work towards building mutually beneficial relationships that will help you perform your best and achieve your professional and personal goals.