August's Mentor of the Month: Cliff Massey CC'10

Left: Cliff Massey CC'10 at Commencement. Right: Current photo of Massey.

Congratulations to Cliff Massey CC'10, as August 2019 Mentor of the Month. Massey leads business development, strategy, and operations for a CrowdAI, a small, seed-stage startup in San Francisco. He is participating in the Odyssey Summer Match program and mentoring two students for the summer.

Interview with Cliff Massey CC'10

Tell us about your Summer Match mentor experience. How many students have are you mentoring?

My Summer Match mentor experience has been excellent. I’m mentoring two outstanding CC students, each with very different backgrounds and interests. We’ve exchanged emails and had Skype conversations to get to know each other better. I'm impressed by both of them.

What have you gained from being a mentor?

Being a mentor gives me the opportunity to give back my time to the College. My Columbia experience means a great deal to me, and I want to make sure I can help the next generation of Columbia students have an even better experience than I did. Since I’m in the Bay Area, I can’t make it back to campus during the academic year, so the Summer Match program has allowed me to contribute in my own way, and on my own schedule. More importantly, I’ve met two incredible CC students, who remind me why the College is such a special place.

What advice you would give a student looking for a mentor or a student who might be curious if a mentor is for them?

My advice would be to just do it! As a student, you really have very little to lose from being matched with a mentor, and potentially so much to gain. It’s so valuable having someone who’s been through a similar experience whom you can turn to for advice on issues big and small. Don’t assume that mentors are only there to provide insight or connections to the professional world — that’s certainly part of it, but you’ll find plenty of Columbia alumni are willing to help with just about anything.

About the Odyssey Mentoring Program

The Odyssey Mentoring Program (OMP) was founded on the belief that Columbia College students and alumni want to support one another, share stories and encourage one another’s success, thus creating a strong and tight-knit community. The College has more than 50,000 alumni working in myriad careers and around the country. OMP makes it possible for community members to connect in a variety of ways, from an email exchange to in-person meetings and small group gatherings.