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Career Mentoring

Give students the skills and knowledge to make a bright future


Our Career Mentoring scheme offers Nottingham alumni the opportunity to provide career advice and support to current students.

Mentoring develops via remote contact over the academic year, giving participants time to benefit from their mentor's professional experience and knowledge.

Mentor applications are now closed. We'll be in touch with matching notifications by mid-November. 

Please note: successful matching is subject to student demand and therefore cannot be guaranteed.

Paul Kitchen, current mentor
Watching people grow is one of life’s greatest gifts. The experience with my mentees has been highly positive - they've taught me just as much as I've taught them. 

Paul Kitchen (Psychology/Philosophy, 1983)

Director of Toucan Digital and current Career Mentor 


Current mentor Paul Kitchen explains the benefits of mentoring ➝

1. Giving back feels great: I’ve had so many breaks, helpful colleagues and brilliant mentors myself during my career who have made a real difference helping to inform my decisions so it felt right that I might do the same in a formal structure rather than informally with colleagues.

2. It’s a win-win for all parties: The first career step seems tougher now than when I graduated back in the day. Social media has a major impact on how young people relate to the world. Student stress levels are much higher and there is significant growth in mental health issues reported across media. Mentoring helps to create another support bridge between young talent, the University and potentially business leaders through internships/placements. 

3. It's a skill refresh: If you're a leader then you're probably already committed to lifelong learning and my experience with undergraduates has been highly positive. They're bright, socially savvy and will teach you just as much as you’re likely to teach them especially when it comes to using the very latest collaborative tools. This will stretch you and you will grow. My last mentee is a keen content curator and blogger with aspirations to work in marketing/social marketing which means I’ve learnt a lot from her as well. 

4. The results are measurable: Setting goals at the start of the relationship means you can create measuring posts during a specified period. Doing this well means you push the mentee and yourself to make it work for both of you. Together we created a list of the KPIs (key performance indicators) that we would use to measure how the relationship was working. My last mentee found both spring and summer internships during our short relationship and is already considering roles at the end of her studies.

5. Watching people grow is one of life’s greatest gifts: The impact you will have on confidence, thinking styles, boundaries, independence of thought, creativity is immense. You can make a real difference and this is definitely a two-way street. I’ve picked up some great insights into different working styles, as well as a deeper understanding of the challenges facing our young talent. I think I’m better prepared to be valuable going forward.

6. You are supported in the role: Regular status check-ins by the University and short surveys help to focus your effort and provide the opportunity to ask questions about progress.

Young talent deserves our support, they are our future. My mentees are bold, self-demanding and will find a way to make it happen. All they need is encouragement and direction, helping them to build the soft skills needed to perform in the real world. 


What to expect from us 

Communicate with mentees over email, phone or video call

If we find you a match* you can expect:

  • to receive introductory online training from a dedicated Mentoring Coordinator 
  • to receive ongoing support from your Mentoring Coordinator, including three check-ins across the sixth month scheme  

*Please note this is subject to mentee demand. 


What we expect from you, the mentor 

How much time...

If matched you will need to accept our mentor agreement and commit to: 

  • online mentor training at the start of the scheme (a 1 hour webinar/online induction) 
  • monthly mentoring sessions over email, text or videocall with your mentee, ensuring they are making progress - around 1 hour per month 
  • providing feedback at the end of the scheme

2019 to 2020 Mentoring schedule 

If you are matched to a student you will be notifed by mid-November. From there, your key dates are as follows: 

Your mentoring timeline (November to April)

Diagram key: 
mentor key


Mentoring Stories

The Mentor: Hear why Amy, a senior scientist at Sygnature Discovery, chose to mentor Nottingham students.

The Mentee: Hear how mentoring helped fourth-year neuroscience student Nerissa feel inspired about her future career.


Are you a student seeking a mentor?

Contact the Careers and Employability Service by the end of October 2019. Find out more.

Alumni Relations

Portland Building
The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 823 2408
fax: +44 (0)115 951 3937