Speed mentoring event connects HR Management students with alumni

Students in the School of Human Resources Management were treated to an evening of expert advice and candid feedback from York alumni on Jan. 26 at the Connections Speed Mentorship & Networking event hosted by the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS) development team.

More than 20 LA&PS alumni mentors met online with 75 students, over three speed-mentoring rounds and topical networking sessions in Zoom breakout rooms. The alumni mentors, all senior leaders in industry and government, brought a breadth of experience and knowledge to guide students on their career journeys.

Screenshot of Zoom HRM speed mentoring event

The event also included a feature interview with LA&PS and Osgoode alumna Grace Palombo, executive vice-president and chief human resource officer at Great-West Lifeco Inc. Palombo talked about her career journey and gave valuable insights for students aspiring to a career in human resources management.

The evening gave students a chance to stretch their networking muscles, delve deeper and ask more questions about the career paths of our alumni.

“I am so grateful for our brilliant LA&PS alumni who took the time to connect with and inspire our students,” said LA&PS Dean J.J. McMurtry. “Even in unprecedented times, students can develop their skills and work towards their career dreams.”

Raed Baker, a fourth-year student, was eager to recommend the event. “I was very pleased with the number of mentors there were – and such qualified and accomplished mentors. Networking was so easy to do, as all the mentors genuinely wanted to help mentees,” he said.

This initiative is just one of many ways LA&PS offers students opportunities to meet established professionals and seasoned experts in their fields and gain exposure to possible career pathways. “I enjoyed how open and honest the mentors were. They were willing to share their personal experience and offer up advice based on what they've learned,” said Alyssa Ramkissoon, a third-year year student in the program.

In addition, these events also benefit our esteemed alumni, who are given an opportunity to reflect on their own career journeys and give back to the York community.

"A very positive experience. The event was exceedingly well executed – impressive,” said Kelly Mawhinney, the head of talent from Benelux Western Europe at Willis Towers Watson, who joined the event from the Netherlands.

This event could not have taken place without the enthusiastic and generous participation of York alumni who were eager to give back to York students, the Faculty, and the School of Human Resources Management.

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