Mentors for Entrepreneurial Growth
a mentoring program to support JCU students and recent graduates
As part of its commitment to fostering a creative, collaborative community of innovative leaders, the JCU Institute for Entrepreneurship (IFE) has established a predominantly Alumni-based mentoring program connecting aspiring entrepreneurs and social innovators with a network of experts; mentors are meant to provide support in the early stages of idea and business development, in addition to sharing their wealth of experience in areas such as career, academic and general advice.
Mentors can play an important role in the entrepreneurial development of an individual. They guide entrepreneurs from conception to development and growth, inspiring extraordinary effort, nurturing experimentation and adding experience to the decision-making process. We aim to create purposeful, mutually rewarding relationships, in which Mentors will act as enablers of young talent, providing knowledge, advice, connections and valuable insights.
The immediate intent of this program is to match JCU students and recent graduates to experts who can help them move to the next level.
The longer-reaching objective is to support the development of skills and learning habits for a lifetime, to encourage leaders who will make positive contributions to a complex multicultural world, and to create a tight-knit, collaborative community, all values embedded in the University's Mission.
who can participate as mentee
All JCU students and recent graduates, regardless of major, can participate as Mentees. If they have a project they would like to pursue with the assistance of a mentor, it should be presented clearly and persuasively. If you are interested in becoming a Mentee, (a) complete and submit the Mentee Request Form, and (b) send a copy of your resume to [email protected], specifying Mentee Request and your name in the Subject.
who can become a mentor
We are looking for people from JCU's global community with 5+ years of experience, particularly in the areas of entrepreneurship, social business, social innovation and fundraising. Mentors are successful professionals who appreciate the support and inspiration they have received along the way and who want to give back by helping their mentees grow as people and as professionals.
Our mentors are members of our community, either as Alumni or as Friends of the Institute, thus ensuring an understanding of our culture and values, and consequently facilitating the establishment of a rapport.
Helping someone else and making a difference in his or her career and life is extremely rewarding. You'll also be helping your own career by being pushed to stay at the cutting edge so you can pass on the latest strategies and advice to your mentee. You will be a more valuable employee and experience personal and professional growth as your leadership, problem-solving, networking and general communications skills continue to advance. Interacting outside your regular networks with the next generation of students is invigorating and will inspire (or reward you with) fresh and creative ideas. So make mentoring part of your legacy and start sharing your expertise!
If you are interested in becoming a mentor in our program please complete and submit the Mentor Registration Form.
The Institute will match mentoring requests with the mentors registered in the program, based on the needs of the mentees and on the profile provided by the mentors. The Institute will provide an initial introduction of the parties and will follow the relationship from a distance, without direct involvement unless otherwise required.
Each mentoring match will have unique needs and characteristics, but generally the Mentor can expect to play a role in providing advice in the areas of career development, further education and specific entrepreneurial advice in relation to one or more of the following areas:
- Providing sources of information for early stage market research
- Help in defining a consistent value proposition
- Providing feedback on material (business plans, presentations, brochures, etc.)
- Assessing financial needs and strategy
- Establishing pricing policy
- Defining strategic direction
- Creating connections with other players in the sector of reference (from potential customers to technical experts to investors)
Mentors are expected to contribute 6-10 hours of their time to the Mentee during the
course of a year, through meetings, Skype conversations or emails, to be distributed
in terms of length and frequency according to the Mentor's availability and the Mentee's
Mentees will behave courteously and professionally at all times, mindful of the Mentor's commitment and dedication to the program.
What is a mentor's time commitment?
The mentor is expected to meet, Skype or email the mentee for about half an hour, on average once a month, for six months to a year. The frequency of the communication may vary throughout the period depending on specific needs and state of development of the project.
Can I be a mentor if I do not live in Italy?
Yes, we are looking to build our network worldwide, to serve a student body that represents more than 80 countries in all continents.
As a student, why would I want to be in the program?
The program gives students the opportunity to form one-on-one relationships with successful alumni and professionals. Mentors provide resources, support, and introductions to other professionals.
Is there a standard structure for the meeting?
During the first meeting, the mentee will take the time to explain the idea to the mentor and describe his/her need. Every meeting should end with a list of things the mentee should accomplish by the next meeting. The mentee should also follow up with an email summarizing what has been said as well as the action items agreed to.
How many projects can a mentor follow at a time?
In order to provide the best quality of advice and commitment, we believe a mentor should take on a maximum of 2 projects at a time. This however is not mandatory and can be discussed.