Mission

The mission of the STEM Alumni Mentorship Program offered by UCC @ CMNS and UMD LSAMP is to increase the retention of historically excluded undergraduate students in STEM and their representation in STEM careers. To achieve this, the program will expand the professional connections of student participants to enhance their career readiness. By receiving individualized support from mentors, participants will strengthen their ability to succeed in their academic coursework and secure employment in a STEM field of their choice. Participants will also find community in each other through events and programming provided by the mentorship program staff.

Information for Prospective Mentees

As a mentee, you can expect to achieve the following outcomes as a result of participating in this program: 

  • Increase your knowledge of essential career preparation skills, such as creating a resume, interviewing, and networking
  • Gain confidence to participate in opportunities related to career development, such as student organizations, undergraduate research, and internships
  • Develop an understanding of what it's like to work in a particular job/industry as a historically underrepresented individaul in STEM by engaging in coversations with your mentor
  • Find support among fellow program participants through programming provided by UCC @ CMNS and LSAMP

You will meet with your mentor at least once every other week to discuss your progress towards your career goals. A curriculum guide will be provided to mentors so they are able to engage with you on different aspects of your career development. Each semester, the program staff will host a variety of professional and social events to help you build your career skills and establish a community among program participants. As a mentee, you are required to participate in at least two (2) events per semester.

Throughout the program, you will submit various career materials (e.g. resume, LinkedIn profile, mock interview clips), to the program staff and your mentor so we can evaluate your career readiness. This will help you be more prepared when applying to your next career development opportunity. It also serves as a way for you to reflect on how much you've grown throughout the academic year.

Information for Prospective Mentors

Mentors are an invaluable resource to our students and this program. In addition to supporting the university's diversity and inclusion initiatives by mentoring students, this program will also give you the opportunity to enhance your counseling/communication skills and network with fellow STEM alumni. Staff from UCC @ CMNS and UMD LSAMP will ensure that you are equipped with all the skills and knowledge necessary to form a successful relationship with your mentee(s). We expect the following time commitment from our mentors:

  • Complete an asynchronous training (approx. 45 minutes) prior to the start of the program
  • Meet with your mentee(s) twice a month to discuss their career development (curriculum map will be provided)
  • Provide feedback on career-related materials from your mentee(s), such as resumes, cover letters, and LinkedIn profiles, in a timely manner
  • Volunteer at mentorship program events on an as-needed basis

The program is flexible in that you and your mentee(s) schedule time to meet when it works best for you. The only structured time in the program is when we host career events and socials. We understand that every mentor has different schedules that may influence their participation in the program. If you have concerns about the time commitment, please do not hesitate to reach out to us!

Impact

Here are what some of our students had to say about their experience in the program:

Headshot of Melvin Molina

Ever since our first meeting I made it clear what my goal was and [my mentor] took that and helped me achieve that goal. He saw how much effort I was putting in for the goals and he put in just as much if not more. I will forever be grateful for that. He helped me push myself past limits I had made up for myself. 

Melvin Molina, Computer Science, Class of 2021

Headshot of Ameenat Afolabi

Caitlin really helped me a lot and gave me a lot of advice that prepared me and guided me this semester. Without her and this program, I don’t think I would have a good resume, a plan for the summer, or even a plan for the upcoming semester.

Ameenat Afolabi, Computer Engineering, Class of 2024

Headshot of Beatriz Jose

I think that the program did a great job pairing me up with a mentor whose values, and ambitions aligned with mine. I liked how we had similar interests and similar backgrounds. Even though we had different career paths, I think they were similar enough that I was able to gain a lot of knowledge in the healthcare profession.

Beatriz Jose, Biology, Class of 2022

Eligibility & Application

Mentees

To be a mentee in the STEM Alumni Mentorship Program, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Have an undergraduate major declared in CMNS and/or ENGR
  • Interested in pursuing a career/graduate school in STEM
  • Identify as a historically marginalized individual in STEM. This includes, but is not limited to:
    • Women
    • Black students
    • Latinx/Hispanic students
    • Students with disabilities
    • LGBTQ+ students
    • First-generation college students
      We particularly encourage individuals who hold multiple of these identities to apply.

Mentors

To serve as a mentor in the STEM Alumni Mentorship Program, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Currently employed as a professional in a STEM career and/or currently attending graduate/professional school in a STEM field
  • Willing to learn about the nuances of supporting students from historically marginalized backgrounds in their career development
  • Have graduated from UMD - strongly preferred, but not required

Application

Mentee Application

Applications for mentees will open on August 2, 2021.

Mentor Application

Applications for mentors are due August 13, 2021 by 5:00 PM EDT

Program Staff

If you have any questions about the STEM Alumni Mentorship Program, please contact:

Jeffrey Cho

Graduate Assistant - Career Advisor, CMNS

Migdalia Maldonado

LSAMP Bridge Program Coordinator