picture for Mentorship Program Helps Alumni and Students Build Connections

    Mentorship Program Helps Alumni and Students Build Connections

    At a career crossroads, graduate student Natalia Okon ’17 planned to apply to medical school. But first she wanted to work for a pharmaceutical company to learn more about clinical trials and bringing drugs to market. In search of guidance and perspective, she visited the Northwestern Network Mentorship Program website to find an alumni mentor. Her search pulled up a pharmaceutical executive from the Chicago area.

    The executive was Lola Asensio ’00, ’14 MS, a 19-year communications and business operations veteran who works at Shire, a global pharmaceutical company based in Dublin. Weeks after the two met in person for the first time, Asensio’s valuable industry knowledge and coaching helped Okon land her first job as a clinical studies assistant at AbbVie in North Chicago, Ill., in May. “The mentorship program allowed me to log on and pinpoint exactly whom I wanted to reach out to, and Lola was eager to talk, give advice and share her story,” Okon says. “I am where I am right now — with a fantastic job — because of her guidance and enthusiasm.”

    Read the full story here.

    picture for Mentorship Experience Enhances Northwestern Network in Indonesia

    Mentorship Experience Enhances Northwestern Network in Indonesia

    Edward Lontoh '01 and Blaise Hope '12 recently connected through the Northwestern Network Mentorship Program. Both live in Jakarta, Indonesia. “As a Westerner working in the East and especially in a subtle business culture like Indonesia’s, you are always looking for signs to divine the best approach to a given situation,” Hope says. “Talking to Edward has helped clear the mist. On top of that, he has introduced me to investors who are in a position to work with me. It's invaluable.”

    For Lontoh, serving as a mentor has given him an opportunity to help a recent graduate with the transition from college to work, which was a difficult experience for him, along with many other benefits. “My participation has deepened my connection to Northwestern and expanded my networking significantly,” he says.

    Read the full story here.

    picture for Wildcat of the Week: Alexandra Pollack ’13

    Wildcat of the Week: Alexandra Pollack ’13

    Alexandra Pollack ’13 credits the Northwestern network with helping her break into the investment management industry. Via LinkedIn, Pollack connected with an alumnus from 1976 who played an important role in her most recent job search that concluded with securing a position at Northern Trust in Chicago.

    Since joining the Northwestern Network Mentorship Program, Pollack has mentored several students including Alice Zhu ’19, who is interested in a career in the financial industry. Every few months, Pollack and Zhu meet in person or online to talk about classes, resume preparation, summer internships, and interviewing strategies. Pollack has advised Zhu to take the time to get to know her professors and to start networking early—advice that would have been welcomed when she was a student.

    For Pollack, being a mentor has also benefitted her personally. “By giving advice, I’m forced to think about it myself and reflect on my own career path and experiences.” And when the time is right, she hopes to have her own mentor from the program. “Mentoring is a full-circle program. By being in both roles, I can benefit from all aspects of the process.”

    Read the full story here.

    picture for Wildcats of the Week: Eric Terada ’02 and Mo Ran ’19

    Wildcats of the Week: Eric Terada ’02 and Mo Ran ’19

    When Eric Terada ’02 was looking for ways to give back to Northwestern, he came across the Northwestern Network Mentorship Program, which pairs alumni with current students and with other alumni looking for guidance on navigating their careers, exploring new career paths, and pursuing educational opportunities.

    Eric, a consultant at McKinsey & Company and father of two, liked the idea of guiding students and recent graduates at the earliest stages of their careers. “I wanted to help students and alumni figure out what they want to do, what they’re good at, and how to best communicate their stories with prospective employers,” Eric says.

    This fall, Eric began mentoring Mo Ran ’19, a junior from Daqing, China, who is working toward dual degrees in engineering and communications. Mo—who is also an active participant in Northwestern Student Holdings, a student-run company that funds and manages a portfolio of businesses—appreciates the real-world business insight his mentor provides.

    Eric meets regularly with Mo in person and over the phone to discuss career development and share tips on writing résumés and cover letters. Mo is grateful for the opportunity to learn from an accomplished professional in his field of interest, and says that Eric “has helped me develop a better understanding of the business world and how to demonstrate my qualifications.”

    Read the full story here.

    picture for What I Learned from Mentoring a Northwestern Grad

    What I Learned from Mentoring a Northwestern Grad

    Sharon Brooks ’08 met Stephanie Jarvis ’96 when Sharon went in for an interview at the Fiesta Bowl, the annual college football bowl game outside of Phoenix, Arizona. At the time, Stephanie worked as the game’s chief compliance officer. She remembers looking at the pool of candidates and seeing that Sharon was a Northwestern graduate. “The fact that she was a Northwestern alumna stood out immediately and sent her resume to the top of the pile,” Stephanie says.

    Read the full interview with Sharon and Stephanie here.

    picture for Alex Van Atta ’15: Learning from my Northwestern mentor

    Alex Van Atta ’15: Learning from my Northwestern mentor

    Andi Fuess '11 interviewed Alex Van Atta '15 last fall during on-campus recruiting for a position as an analyst at Slalom Consulting, the Chicago-based company where Andi currently works as a strategy consultant. After Alex accepted his position at the company, he learned about the Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences mentorship program, a networking opportunity through McCormick that connects IEMS alumni. And when he saw Andi’s name on the list of potential mentors, he immediately requested her.

    Read the full interview with Andi and Alex here.

    picture for Advice from a Seasoned Mentor: Gayla Kraetsch Hartsough ’71

    Advice from a Seasoned Mentor: Gayla Kraetsch Hartsough ’71

    Gayla Kraetsch Hartsough, Ph.D., has been the President of KH Consulting Group since 1986. In addition to her many accomplishments, Gayla is also an experienced mentor, having fostered many mentoring relationships throughout her professional career. We asked Gayla to share her story with us and to answer some questions about her mentorship experience. Read the full story here.