SFU Beedie Mentors in Business (MIB) aims to bridge the knowledge gap between our students' excellent academic foundation and the realities of a life in business. The program provides a platform for working professionals to share insights, experience and knowledge that will inspire and motivate students embarking on their career search. Our goal is to:
In the Mentors in Business program, Beedie students, at both the graduate and undergraduate level, connect with individuals from the business community in their areas of career interest in order to make better-informed career choices and expand their understanding of a target industry. Recent cohorts have involved between around 150 pairs per term – that is about 600 active participants each year.
15 to 20 hours over the course of the six-month program. Mentees should meet with their mentor, at minimum, one hour per month. Additional time will be required for exploratory research, resume development and other work as assigned by the mentor. Attendance at the MIB program's four mandatory networking events is also included in the time commitment.
Our mentors come from all the key industries and occupy functional roles from Account Manager to VP Sales, Analyst to CEO. We ask for a minimum of three years' professional experience and always match a student with a mentor who has more experience than the mentee. What unifies the mentors is their desire to give back to their profession by supporting students in their professional development.
We seek a match between a mentee with an industry and function focus and a mentor with a perspective on that industry and functional area. The mentor may be a "few steps away" from your target career, but we try to ensure that every mentor will have information and perspectives to offer the mentee that will enhance his or her professional development. Matches are rarely "direct", (i.e. I want to be a Bank Manager, so my mentor is a Bank Manager) but the knowledge of industry, career pathway, functional area or overall business sector is of great value and can often make a difference in future career direction.
We ask our mentors to hold mentees accountable to shared goals which are developed between mentor and mentee at the initial meetings. We ask them to share their skills, insider knowledge and to reflect, candidly but diplomatically to the mentee, where more work is needed to prepare for their target career. Where mentees are still evaluating their direction, we ask that the mentor provide an unbiased sounding board.
Our mentors are one of Beedie School's most precious assets and we expect all mentees to be respectful ambassadors for the Mentors in Business program and for the Beedie School of Business.
SFU Beedie Mentors in Business is open to graduate and undergraduate students. Graduate students must be enrolled in the MSc Finance, MBA, MOT MBA, Surrey MBA or EMBA program. BBA students must be Business Majors with at least 60 credits but no more than 100 credits. Students who leave Beedie before the MIB cohort term is over are not eligible.
Previous MIB participants are eligible to repeat the program if space is available. Acceptance into the program obligates the mentee to meet the Mentee Commitments (see MIB Guide Book page 4).
Set yourself up for success. Students who follow the steps below get much more out of the program and often maintain a long-term connection to their assigned mentor.
This six-month, formal relationship is not intended to lead to a job, however all contacts and skills built through this relationship will support long-term career success.
Once accepted into the MIB program, all mentees are required to complete an MIB Orientation before meeting their mentor. Attendance at one of the in-person orientation sessions is highly recommended; you will get the opportunity to ask questions, meet the program manager, meet other mentees, and complete all of the preliminary work for MIB within the session. However, if you have a class or work conflict, you have the option of completing the orientation online via SFU Canvas. Failure to complete the in-person or online orientation will result in removal from the program.
Download a PDF copy of the Mentoring Guide for your reference.
The goal of matching is not to provide you with a mentor who will hire you - in fact, we seek mentors who have exposure to your target industries, but who are not hiring managers where you want to work. Having a mentor who may one day interview you for a job means you cannot be candid about your weaknesses and learn how to overcome them. The following are the key criteria for a good match:
Complete the online application form IN FULL. Follow the instructions and use the sample application form to guide you in the process. The more clearly you express your career interests and goals, the more effective the matching process. Be as specific as possible. We need to know what industry-specific knowledge you are looking for. Please do not simply say you "want a mentor to learn more about your career". We need to know WHAT (skills, processes, functional areas) you're hoping to learn about and why. Writing your application for the MIB program is a serious undertaking and should be approached after some research and self-reflection. Below are key tips for success: