Frequently Asked Questions
Many Fisher College of Business alums have graciously volunteered their time and expertise. Networking is a process and, as such, you will greatly increase your chances of developing fruitful and lasting connections by following these "rules of engagement" and common questions asked by students and alumni alike.
What expectations does the college have of alumni who agree to serve as career networking volunteers?
As an Ask an Alum Volunteer, you may be contacted by students and other alumni to share information regarding your career path, your employer, job hunting strategies unique to your industry, and opportunities in your field. You will be expected to keep your career networking online profile up to date to reflect any changes in your employment or contact information.
The initial contact you have with a student or alum will be via one of the methods noted as your preferences online: letter, e-mail, or a phone call. You may also choose to invite individuals who have contacted you to your office for informational interviews. Students and alums will be made aware that your primary role is to provide advice and information; you should not be approached as an employment contact, though you may choose to share job leads if you wish.
What are some of the questions can you expect from the students contacting you?
Questions about you:
- How did you first get interested in this line of work? What has been your career path?
- Does your work relate to any academic experiences or studies you pursued while at Fisher?
- How did other aspects of your Fisher experience prepare you for this career?
- What do you enjoy most and least about your work in this industry and why?
- What is your typical day like? What kind of hours do you work? Are they flexible?
- Are there particular lifestyle choices you have made on account of the type of work you do?
Questions about your organization:
- What is a typical career path in this organization? What are some of the most challenging entry level opportunities?
- Does your employer offer any type of training program? What skills and/or experience are necessary?
- What are the prospects for advancement?
- What is your organization's mission?
- How would you describe the culture or work environment and the people with whom you work?
Questions about your career field:
- What type of education or training is recommended or necessary to excel in this field?
- What are the typical jobs, particularly at the entry level? What is the salary range for these positions?
- Can you recommend specific trade journals, publications, or web site resources that would be particularly helpful for conducting research about this field?
- Among my strongest assets are (skills, areas of knowledge, personality traits, and values): where might they fit into this field?
- Who else might you recommend I approach for advice about entering this particular field?
- How welcoming is this field to women, people of color, and members of other underrepresented groups? Do professional networks exist that provide support to individuals like me who are seeking to enter this field?
What are some of the other ways alumni can provide career-related support to Fisher students and graduates?
There are a number of ways, depending on your preferences. As an Ask an Alum Volunteer, you are not expected to provide more than general information. That said, some volunteers have offered to provide feedback on resumes and cover letters or coaching on job search strategies that are specific to the industry. Others have provided names of people within their organization (or other employers) whom the student or graduate can contact by using their name, if they feel so inclined.
On a broader scale, there are numerous ways to support career development at Fisher. Here are just a few possibilities:
- Encourage your organization to participate in Fisher's recruiting programs. Notify us of full-time, internship, seasonal, and summer job opportunities for both students and alumni. (you may contact Jamie Mathews-Mead, email@example.com)
- Volunteer to organize a career-related program in your area. Participate in alumni association-sponsored networking receptions and encourage your friends within the region to do the same.
- Update your alumni record through the Fisher College of Business Alumni & Friends On-Line Community or contact Michelle Jacobson (Jacobson.firstname.lastname@example.org).
Who has access to the network?
All Fisher undergraduate and graduate students as well as registered alumni have access to the Fisher Alumni & Friends On-Line Community. Occasionally, selected "friends of Fisher" and prospective students may also be granted access.
Can all Ask an Alum Volunteers expect to be contacted by current students or Fisher Graduates?
It is our sincere hope that you will be contacted, but there is no guarantee. By being part of the network, however, you will receive periodic communication from the College. Ask an Alum Volunteers are often invited to participate in career panel discussions on campus, workplace site visits, and networking events held off campus in conjunction with the Fisher alumni associations.
What if I no longer wish to be part of the network?
From the front page of Fisher Alumni & Friends Online, simply choose "Become an Ask an Alum Volunteer/Edit or Delete Your Volunteer Information." If you wish to take a temporary break from advising students and alumni, check the box at the bottom of the page that says, "Check this box to set your profile inactive." If you wish to be permanently removed, please check the box that says, "Check this box to DELETE your profile." You may also contact Jamie Mathews-Mead (email@example.com) in the Office of Career Services with other questions or if you feel you have been contacted inappropriately.