Norwich University | Alumni & Family



the class-2-class program

Mentoring Definition
The Class2Class Program definition of mentoring is, a learning partnership between an experienced mentor and a less experienced protégé. Each partnership will be unique to the individuals involved and can be short or long term.

To foster effective and mutually beneficial partnerships between students, alumni, parents and friends of Norwich University. Through a student-centered framework, the Class2Class program is designed to facilitate the exchange of knowledge between mentors and protégés with a focus on personal and career development.

Program Goals
     • To provide opportunities for students, alumni, parents, and friends of Norwich University to connect and engage in conversations around academic, professional, and life goals
     • Empower mentors to engage protégés in critical thinking that foster practical and strategic considerations, as well as provide guidance on how to improve employability skills
     • Enhance the student perspective on career choices, understanding of expectations within the job market while building a robust professional network.

What makes the Class2Class Program different?
C2C is primarily a virtual mentoring program. Norwich University has a large national and international footprint with alumni, parents and friends from all over the world. A digital solution offers mentors a way to participate regardless of their location and makes the Norwich community more accessible for students. Although the program will be driven by a digital platform, C2C offers mentors alternative ways to engage and is flexible enough to accommodate a variety of schedules.

Another unique aspect of the program is that mentor matches are student initiated. Unlike other programs, where protégé and mentor are hand matched, the Class2Class program gives students seeking mentorship the ability to choose their mentor(s) based on their career interests. This approach empowers students to be in charge of their learning and career development. Please see the How C2C Works section for more details.

What is the name of the online platform? How will it be used?
Handshake is an online career resource that will be available to students in Fall of 2018. The platform will be available to mentors on June 2018 for profile completion. Mentors will have through August 2018 to complete their Handshake profiles before the student launch in Fall 2018. The Career and Internship Center (CIC) will utilize Handshake to help students through the job and internship search process while the Leadership and Life Skills Office will use the mentorship tools to manage the Class2Class program.

  • How C2C Works

    Mentoring Categories
    The program is design to provide flexibility for all participants, especially the mentors. There are three ways a mentor can volunteer their time: long-term mentoring, flash mentoring, or on-campus events. Mentors can volunteer in more than one category and can change their availability at any time.

    Flash Mentoring
    Mentors answer questions sent from students through the Handshake platform. Some examples of flash mentoring include but are not limited to:
         • Career/Industry Specific
         • Answer Industry or Career Experience Questions
         • Interview Advice
         • Graduate School Advice
         • Job Application Support
         • Relocation Advice
         • Career Transition Advice

    Mentors come to campus to meet with their protégé(s) or to meet new students seeking mentorship. The Class2Class program will run two on-campus events during the academic year. These events are NOT MANDATORY FOR MENTORS:
         • Class2Class Program Student Kick Off – September 2018
         • Coaching for Leadership & Careers- Spring 2019 (TBD)

    Long-term Mentoring
    A relationship between protégé and mentor that is developed overtime with identified professional goals. Most often, mentoring matches will start with flash mentoring and gradually turn into long-term mentoring.

    Other ways you can connect with students
         • Represent your employer during the fall or spring Career Fairs
         • Post internship opportunities with the Career and Internship Center
         • Attend NU | Connects events offered annually in March
         • Attend NU Send Off events offered during the summer

    How Matches Are Made
    Mentoring matches are student initiated. Students can search for a mentor(s) on Handshake based on career interests. Handshake will automatically make mentor recommendations to students when they login to their accounts. These recommendations are determined by the information provided in the mentor and student profiles. The student can request a mentor through the Handshake recommendations or conduct their own search.

    The C2C Program Coordinator and the Career and Internship Center staff will actively make recommendations throughout the year. The student and mentor will receive a message from Handshake notifying them of the recommendation. Both the student and mentor must accept the recommendation for a mentorship to begin.

    Mentor matches are not permanent. The Class2Class Program is designed to follow the academic year. From September through May, C2C will promote engagement through Handshake and on-campus events. During the months of June through August, the C2C staff will focus on program evaluation and planning for the next year. However, mentor and protégés can elect to continue their relationships by mutual consent.

    There may be times where a mentoring match needs to end. This is OK and we encourage mentors and protégés to be honest when this happens. The Helpful Documents & Forms page will provide tools and strategies to help you begin the mentorship or close a mentorship. The program coordinator is available to assist mentors and protégés with closure, if requested.

    What happens after a mentoring match is made?
    The ‘Helpful Docs & Forms’ page will offer resources to help guide and develop your mentorships online. It is recommended that students have identified specific goals they would like to accomplish before submitting a mentor request. Mentors have valuable information about careers that can enhance students’ knowledge and real world exposure. We ask mentors to share information they feel will help students in their career and personal development. As communication with your protégé becomes more focused, the easier it will be to determine how much information you should share. We also encourage you to talk about more than professional development (hobbies, sports, family, etc.) as a way to connect with your mentee, but only if both parties want to. Our annual Coaching for Leadership & Careers event is great way to meet your protégé/mentor and to meet new protégés/mentors.

    Communication & Time Commitment
    The program is designed to be flexible for both the protégés and mentors. Determining the frequency and duration of contact, as well as the length of the relationship will be up to the mentor and protégé. Should your availability change or you are unable to make contact as scheduled, it will be up to you to update that information on your Handshake profile and communicate with your protégé.

    Handshake offers a messaging feature that enables mentors and protégé to communicate through the platform. It is recommended that the first contacts between a mentor and protégé occur on Handshake to help determine compatibility and what type of mentoring is needed. Once rapport is established, mentors and protégé can transition to other means of communication that both parties are comfortable with. Sharing personal contact information, such as cell phone numbers and email addresses will be at the discretion of the protégé and mentor. You may contact the program coordinator if you have questions about alternative means of communication.

    Program Coordinator Responsibilities
         • Manages the mentoring features on Handshake
         • Checks in with mentoring matches
         • Be available to mentors and protégés as needs arise
         • Ensure that every effort is made to create a productive and positive experience for both parties
         • Promotes engagement throughout the C2C program cycle
         • Send periodic emails regarding program updates and upcoming events
         • Provide opportunities for program feedback

  • Mentors

    Who can be a Mentor?
    Anyone with a Norwich connection can participate in the Class2Class Program as a mentor. This means alumni, parents and friends of Norwich University can participate. 

    Role of the Mentor
    Mentors enhance the educational experience of Norwich students by providing them with real-world advice and feedback on their career interests. Some examples of how mentors can assist students include but are not limited to:
         • Describing personal experience related to career development/advancement
         • Discussing work/life balance
         • Serve as a resource, providing guidance, and share expertise to promote student success
         • Encourage students to seek out networking opportunities/contacts and develop new skills
         • Helping your protégé identify long-term goals and develop a plan of action

    Mentor Benefits
         • Develop meaningful connections with students
         • Learn about the Norwich of today and the next generation
         • Experience a reconnection with Norwich
         • Expand your professional network
         • Improve interpersonal, communication and leadership skills

    Who are the Protégés?
    The Class2Class program will serve all Norwich undergraduate students. The undergraduate population includes full-time, part-time, commuter, civilian and Corps of Cadets students.

    Am I limited to a certain amount of mentees?
    No. As a mentor, you have control over how many mentees you want to work with and can indicate that in your Handshake profile.
    What kind of resources will be available for mentors and mentee?
    We are developing a Helpful Docs & Forms page that will be available in the summer of 2018. These documents will contain program information, instructions on how to use the platform, resources available on campus and optional documents you can use to help you empower and build relationships with students.

    Mentor Expectations
         • Set clear and realistic goals with protégé(s)
         • Maintain contact as agreed upon with protégé(s)
         • Lead by example
         • Encourage professionalism
         • Maintain privacy/confidentiality
         • Update and maintain Handshake profile
         • Complete program feedback surveys
         • Contact program coordinator with any concerns about your experience as a mentor or questions about the program

    How to Become a Mentor
         • Complete and submit the Mentor Intake Form
         • Your Handshake account will be activated within one week of your form submission.

  • Undergraduate Students

    Undergraduate students interested in participating in the Class2Class Program as protégés, should contact Kat Collins at

Point of Contact
Katherine Collins '11
Associate Director of Leadership and Life Skills
Class2Class Program Coordinator

2018-2019 C2C Calendar:

May 2018: Verification Form Release
June 2018: Handshake Mentor Account Activation
June-August 2018: Mentor Profile Completion
September 14, 2018: On-campus launch to students
February 2019: Mid-year survey to mentors and mentees

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