Career Mentoring Programme for Second Year Students

Would you like to find out more about careers that interest you?

Would you like to talk to someone from that profession about your career ideas?

Would you like help with your job applications and interviews?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then consider DCU's Award-winning Mentorship Programme


Open to second year students from the DCU Business School
Open to second year students from the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences
Open to second year students from the Faculty of Engineering and Computing
Open to second year students from the Faculty of Science and Health
Open to second year students from the Institute of Education
Open to second year students on DCU Sport Scholarship athletes

What is the Mentorship Programme

The Career Mentoring Programme assists students in your professional and career development. It involves a mentor mentoring a mentee. In this case, the mentors are DCU graduates and/or employers. The mentees are current second year DCU students. The mentor shares their expertise and experience to assist the mentee (student) to motivate, empower and help you with your career ideas and professional development. It provides an opportunity to meet and network graduates and employers who are able to offer support in helping you to develop you career ideas, clarifying goals and improving your employability.  

Benefits to Students

  • Helps you to start thinking  about your career ideas. Gives you time to reflect, ‘stand back’ and review where you are now, where you want to get to, and how best to get there.
  • Gain insights into the world of work and key workplace skills. 
  • Explore/Discover your strengths and skills.
  • Receive personalized support, feedback and recognition
  • Boost your confidence with your career direction
  • Gain key employability skills such as communication
  • Expand your social and professional network
  • Assist you to achieve changes and goals
  • Great addition to your CV
About the Mentees

The mentees are second year students

Who is eligible to apply

Second year undergradaute students who will be entering second year in October 2020. 

What type of things do mentees discuss with mentors

  • Discussing career areas of interest
  • Researching and exploring particular job roles and sectors
  • Deciding on what to do after university
  • Review a CV/LinkedIn profile.
  • Practice job interviews and networking.
  • Finding out more and developing key skills required for the workplace.

What makes a good mentee

  • Students who are motivated to improving their employability and professional development skills.
  • Students open to ideas and feedback
  • Students committed to participating for the full duration of the scheme
  • Students who are prepared to commit to your future through this programme.

What makes a successful mentoring relationship

  • A student that is willing to drive the process; organising meetings, articulating what you would like to gain, what areas you are interested in finding experience in and asking questions etc.  Remember the mentor is volunteering their time.

That you are committed to achieving what you set out to do, for example, helping to increase your self-confidence, insights into roles and sectors etc
Who are the Mentors

The mentors are a mix of DCU graduates and/or employers. They have worked for a number of years and have been identified as role models. The mentor often shares his/her career experiences, advises and informs the mentee.

What activities are involved in the Mentorship Programme

One to one meetings with your mentor, activites and events. 

Activites to be undertaken by the mentee (student)

  • Organising and meeting with your Mentor at least three times over the period of the Mentoring Programme.  
  • Completing an Initial learning agreement with your mentor. (Careers will give you a copy of this).
  • Completing a mentoring meeting record of each meeting with the mentor and upload onto your Portfolio (Careers Service will explain this at the training and induction session)
  • Participating in three career and professonal skills sessions organised by the Careers Service.
  • Submit a Reflective portfolio and attend a training session on the Reflection Portfolio demonstrating reflective learning arising from participating in the Mentoring Programme and how it has developed you.
  • In addition, mentees must also complete two from the following list:
    • Virtual Work Shadow Day
    • CV
    • Interview Skills
    • Career Growth Plan

What is the time commitment

About 20 hours over 6 months between October and April (excluding the virtual work shadow day)


What is the schedule

Thurs 1st Oct: Email to second year students about the Mentorship Programme 
Wed 7th Oct 12 - 12.45pm: Online Information Session on Mentorship for Students 
Thurs 8th Oct 1-1.45pm: Online Information Session on Mentorship for Students
Tues 13th Oct 12-12.45pm: Online Information Session on Mentorship for Students 
Tues 13th Oct 1-1.45pm: Online Information Session on Mentorship for Students 
Mon 19th Oct 1pm-1.45pm: Online Information Session on Mentorship for Students 			  
Application Form opens on Wed 7th Oct - Students must attend an information session in order to be eligible to apply. 
Wed 21st Oct: Closing date for Applications 
              Important: Students must attend an information session in order to be eligible to apply. 
Mon 26th Oct - Fri 6th Nov:  Matching of mentees and Mentors 
               Introductory emails by mentors

November: Opening Ceremony (Date TBC)
          Mentoring Month 1

December: Mentoring Month 2

January: Mentoring Month 3

February: Mentoring Month 4
          Virtual Work Shadow Day

March:	Mentoring Month 5
	Submission of Reflect Portfolios on Friday 26th March

Date TBC: Closing Ceremony of the Mentorship Programme & Awarding of Certificates


Will I receive a Certificate of Participation

On completion of the programme, mentees will receive a Certificate of Participation

Can the Mentoring Programme count towards my Engage Award

Yes, it can be counted towards your Silver Engage Award.
The Careers & Professional Skills Sessions can count towards the formal learning.
The one-to-one meetings can count towards the informal hours required.
The virtual work shadow day can count towards the formal learning requirement.
The career skills workshops can count towards the formal learning requirement. 

How to Apply

What is the Application Procedure and closing date

You must attend an Information Session in order to be eligible to apply for the Mentorship Programme
After the session, you will be emailed a link to the Application Form. 
The closing date is Wednesday 21st October at 5pm.

Tips for Application Form

  • Take the time to think about your profile before submitting the form. This is important for matching you with the most suitable Mentor.
  • Think about how you intend to use the experience of mentoring to move your career ideas forward. Mentoring involves reflecting on your experiences, listening to your mentor and then putting the advice into practice.
  • Be specific about the areas you are keen to have a mentor from and try to focus on job areas.
  • Provide as much information as possible to make it clear what you hope to achieve and to enable the matching process.

Before Submitting

  • Does it read well?
  • Have you tailored your answers to the questions?
  • Have you thought about the graduate/employer who will be reading your profile?
  • Check grammar and spelling to ensure you are creating the most positive impression.
  • Also keep a copy of your form so you have this for reference if you are successfully matched on the scheme.
Mentor Case Studies

"The DCU Structured Mentorship programme was a firm highlight of my time in university. It's a fantastic opportunity to meet a professional in your area of study and learn valuable career insights, enhance employability skills, access a broad network of professionals and improve your CV."

"This programme was definitely a first step insight of a professional career and how it is to work in the public sector. Hearing from my mentor's experiences, the challenges and opportunities along the way, inspired me to work even more towards a future career and be better prepared in the sense of expectations. Also, it is a good chance to start developing those networking skills! I would definitely recommend this programme."

"A really worthwhile programme which allowed me to gather invaluable information on my career area. I would highly recommend this to every student!"

"I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the DCU Mentorship Programme. I found it extremely beneficial as it helped to build my self-confidence which was especially important before I began the process of securing my third year Intra Placement. Although I was paired with a mentor who was based overseas, we Skyped regularly and still keeping contact over a year later."

"Very good programme and helps with employability as it shows you have taken time out of your schedule to find out more about your career. Very good on the CV and was a talking point in all interviews. Helps you find out if you really want to go down that career path from someone who is in that field."