One of the most helpful exercises, according to Stiksma, was the mock interview Rogers conducted prior to her internship interview. “It was a game-changing experience both in terms of increasing my confidence on certain questions and pointing out where I could improve my narrative on others,” said Stiksma.
Similarly, Marshall, a research scientist at HumRRO, said her mentee, Sarah Sultzer, was most interested in advice on the job search process. “We spoke about the interview process and ways to help reduce anxiety during that stressful experience, as well as tips on negotiating salary, which can be a hard thing for women, especially, to navigate.”
Sultzer is graduating this month with a masters in I-O from George Mason. “Alyssa gave me great advice on how to know my worth when it comes to accepting job offers,” said Sultzer. “We also talked about how to structure my resume, how to network effectively, and ways to showcase my relevant school and work experience.”
Howald was on the fence about participating in the mentoring program because he didn’t think he had much to contribute as a recent graduate. Lee encouraged him to sign up, emphasizing the relatability factor. He’s now glad he did because of what he learned from his mentee, Kira Foley, who is a Ph.D. candidate at George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Foley’s research is a timely one, focusing on diversity and inclusion in the virtual workplace and challenges for managers.
“I learned so much from Kira because of her research on diversity and inclusion” said Howald. “Mentoring is a great opportunity to exchange ideas and get other perspectives.”
Foley, who is also a Consortium Research Fellow at the U.S. Army Research Institute, has had mentors and networking opportunities at school and work. She signed up for the PTCMW program because she wanted a structured mentor-mentee relationship with someone who was not her boss or her graduate school advisor. “Nick doesn’t have control over my paycheck or my ability to graduate,” Foley noted. “I can be real with him, almost like the more senior graduate students in my program, except he has a couple of years’ post-grad experience under his belt.”
In addition to discussing ways to communicate her skills and experiences, Foley said, “Nick and I talked about everything from job search and application strategies to professional ethics in the organizational sciences.”
“Hearing a fresh perspective from someone like Arielle who is knowledgeable in the field just cannot be overvalued,” Stiksma added.