Alumni-Student Connections: The power of mentorship

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The following is part of the GPS Alumni-Student Connections Series, highlighting some of our students who have been recruited by our alumni. This series shows the power of connection between current students and our alumni.

Lis Best ’12

Lis Best ’12 was hired by alumna Molly Gavin ’03 as an intern at Qualcomm, Inc. and by the end of the summer, she was offered a full-time position as a senior analyst after graduation.

What role did networking play in your success?

In my first year at GPS, I realized I really wanted to go into corporate social responsibility (CSR). Between December and April, I applied to dozens of internships related to sustainability, and I heard crickets. It wasn’t until I shifted my internship search strategy to focus on opportunities from GPS alumni that I actually started gaining some traction.

I interviewed for a number of exciting opportunities working with alumni in the summer of 2011, and the chance to join Molly in the government affairs department seemed like a total dream. I treated my internship as an extended job interview, and I was thrilled that at the end of the summer I was offered a full-time position on the team after graduation and a part-time internship through the school year until then.

What tips do you have for students about the hiring process? 

  • Be on the lookout for opportunities to meet alumni who are doing what you want to be doing when you finish the program.
  • Clearly articulate what you want and how they can help you.
  • If you have an informational interview with someone, do your homework, come prepared with a list of questions and show genuine interest in them as a person.
  • Follow up!

Overall thoughts about your experience? 

The alumni network is definitely one of the biggest “pros” of attending GPS. I feel so lucky that Molly gave me the opportunity to join her team – words can’t convey how much I learned from working for her and collaborating with other smart people in the team.

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Alumni-Student Connections: Leveraging the skills taught at GPS