Summer 2020 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match

The Odyssey Mentoring Program is launching a 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match to help students and new grads this summer. Many of their summer plans - from internships to study abroad adventures - have shifted due to COVID-19 and we are eager to support them during this challenging season.

OMP’s 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match will pair an alumni mentor with a student or 2020 grad based on overlapping areas of interest. Then, the mentor and mentee will connect virtually before August 10 for a helpful 30-60 minute conversation about their Columbia experience or life after college. It’s as easy as that! Time and again, we hear from students and new grads that connecting with an alum for a brief conversation can make a huge difference.

Sign up today!


  • Tuesday, July 7: Registration opens
  • Wednesday, July 15: Registration closes
  • Week of July 20: Match notifications go out to mentors and mentees
  • Week of July 20-Monday, August 10: Mentors and Mentees connect virtually for a 30-60 minute conversation
  • Monday, August 10: Deadline for connecting with your match


Who can sign up to be a mentee? Current students and the Class of 2020.

Who can sign up to be a mentor? Alumni who graduated in 2015 and up. Unfortunately, alumni who graduated between 2016-2019 are not eligible to participate as mentors in this specific Mentoring Match.

Who will I be matched with? This  is a 1:1 match, so a current student or new grad will be paired with one alumni mentor based on overlapping areas of interest, such as industry.

What is expected of me if I participate in the 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match? The goal of the 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match is for the mentor and mentee to connect one time this summer for a 30-60 minute phone call or Zoom meeting. If the mentor and mentee want to connect more than once, that's great, but not required.

What should a mentor ask their mentee? The purpose of the 1:1 Virtual Mentoring Match is to support students and new graduates during this challenging season of social distancing.

If your mentee is a student, you might ask them:

  • How have your plans changed and what challenges are you facing in light of COVID?
  • What are the pros and cons of virtual learning?
  • What are you most looking forward to in the new school year?
  • What is your major and what are your favorite classes?
  • What student groups and extracurricular activities are you involved with at Columbia?
  • How are you spending your summer? Do you have an internship?
  • Do you know what you want to do after you graduate? What industries are you interested in?

If your mentee is a new graduate, you might ask them:

  • Congratulate them for finishing their Columbia College experience under such extreme circumstances. They showed a great deal of resilience.
  • How have your plans changed and what challenges are you facing in light of COVID?
  • What was your major and what do you hope to do now that you've graduated?
  • What professional industries are you interested in?
  • How do you hope to grow and what do you hope to do, see and accomplish in the next 2-5 years?

What should a mentee ask their mentor?

  • Can you please tell me about your Columbia College experience?
  • Can you please tell me about your professional journey and how you got from Columbia to where you are in your career today?
  • As I navigate my way through COVID, I'm wondering what challenges you faced while at Columbia or in your career and how you overcame them?
  • What advice do you wish you could give your college self?

How can mentees effectively engage alumni mentors?

  • Review their OMP and LinkedIn profiles before reaching out
  • Draft a thoughtful message and provide 3-5 times that work for you to connect virtually
  • Respond within 24 hours
  • Always send a thank you note
  • Remember: there is no perfect match, but you can learn something valuable from every alum 
  • OMP is for guidance and advice. It is not transactional and you should not ask an alum for a job or internship.


If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Odyssey Mentoring team at