Color Bars

Five Things I Hope to Accomplish During the Aztec Mentor Program

Brooke at CAF with FOX5 We’re proud of our strong San Diego State University roots here at NST, and I’m no exception. We’re always looking for ways to give back to the university, and when I heard about the Aztec Mentor Program through SDSU’s Career Services, I thought it would be a great way I could personally get involved and help a budding young professional.

Just this month, I was matched with a senior majoring in journalism with a minor in television, film and new media production. Meet Brooke, my mentee!

Although I’m a public relations professional, not a broadcast journalist like Brooke aspires to become, we hit it off at the kick-off celebration breakfast on campus, and the next week got to work on the job shadowing part of the program. Brooke met me at a client live shot with the FOX 5 San Diego television station where she was able to watch the ins and outs of a remote broadcast. I was also able to connect her with the reporter, with whom she’ll be doing an informational interview in the near future. Success!

As we continue on our mentoring journey together, I created a list of five things I’m going to hold myself to during our time together, which directly corresponds to Brooke’s goals for the program.

  • Check in with Brooke at least once per week – I want to make sure she knows that I’m here to support her and that she can rely on me, whether it’s a small question or larger task like reviewing a cover letter. I also want her to feel comfortable with asking work-life balance questions as she enters the professional arena.
  • Provide opportunities for her to experience her desired career path – Allowing her to job shadow in situations that are applicable to her broadcast dreams will expose Brooke to new situations and hopefully provide a more clear understanding of what lies ahead. I also hope that understanding how public relations professionals work with broadcast journalists will give her a leg-up in the job market because she will be aware of how PR professionals can be an asset when developing stories.
  • Help Brooke create a rock star “brand” for herself – Brooke communicated that she wants to figure out a way to set herself apart from other broadcast journalism job candidates. I think we can do this by getting to know each other better and having conversations about what her goals are for the future. I can also use my professional experience to make her brand story come to life through her resume and/or cover letter, which I’d love to have buttoned up by the time the program concludes.
  • Introduce her to the importance of networking and building relationships – I may not have direct experience in the broadcast television field, but I work very closely with many people who do. I credit my success with media relations to building strong relationships and I’d like to help Brooke understand how cultivating relationships can be a great professional asset.
  • Foster a relationship that we can continue to cultivate – I am grateful to still have a few treasured people in my life that I consider personal and professional mentors. I will do my absolute best to be available for Brooke throughout our time together and provide candid, but supportive feedback, which will hopefully give us a platform on which to build a strong relationship.

Are there actions or elements you’ve found helpful while serving as a mentor? Share them with us on our Facebook page.

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