Immacolata De Rosa is a fresh Clamda-IM graduate who has recently joined Cisco as Associate Sales Rappresentative. She has been part of the Mentorship Program since 2019 and we want to share her experience with her mentor Francesco Carbone. Enjoy the reading!
Interviewer: How and in which context did your Mentor help you during the two years at CLAMDA? How often did you get in touch?
I met my Mentor during the first year at CLAMDA. He helped me define my priorities and set my professional goals. He made me realize the job I truly wanted to do. At first, we had monthly calls.
Interviewer: Did your Mentor support you choosing the job, company and preparing for the applications and interviews? If yes, how?
After several meetings, my Mentor informed me about the open position for which I have eventually applied. He was able to provide me with the right suggestions as he had recently gone through the same professional path. His suggestions were fundamental for the interviews I took. Applying to big companies is complex and, in case you pass the first selection, the following interviews are increasingly harder. You are expected to be prepared to discuss both your motivation and to know details about the company you are applying to. My Mentor’s help was particularly useful to prepare for this last technical part of the selection process, but more importantly it helped me the trust he had in me. Having someone on your side when you go through a very stressful selection process is really important.
Interviewer: Was the Mentorship Program useful for your current job position? Why?
The Mentorship Program has been fundamental for my current job position. With a lot of preparation, motivation and a little luck (it always helps!) I got the job my mentor recommended. They really helped me in preparing for my job. Nowadays, many people have multiple university degrees, many speak various languages or follow extracurricular courses. Our CV is only one thing companies look at when hiring. The preparation that someone who has faced challenges similar to those that await you and who can understand your fears can offer, is something you definitely won’t find in textbooks and goes beyond any college course. I would call it a pre-dive into the work world from the comfortable world of the university.
Interviewer: Did the Clamda courses prepare you for your current job? Did you have to take additional university courses to develop knowledge or skills required by your current job? If so, was your mentor helpful in making these choices?
During Clamda I had the opportunity to follow some extracurricular courses and I did an internship that proved to be very important in filling in some gaps from my studies. In this case it was useful to have the support of my mentor who from the first day always pushed me to go beyond the classic university courses and encouraged me to discover what could interest me outside of university: it is in that moment that I deepened my interest in the sector of the company for which I currently work.
Interviewer: What is your advice towards the new mentees of the program? How can they build a constructive relationship and best leverage this opportunity?
My biggest advice is to build a true and authentic relationship with your mentor. Being assigned to a mentor and being able to develop a connection based on trust and honesty are totally different things. When you meet somebody, you never ask something like “Do you wanna be my friend?”, because friendship is built over time and thanks to affinity. The mentorship program works the same way. Affinity and complicity allow to develop mutual trust. So, remember to always be honest, don’t be afraid about telling your professional dreams and let your mentor help you throughout the program, since she/he has already faced most of the challenges you are facing now!
Interviewer: Have you ever had any issue with your mentor?
I have been very lucky during the program. We never had any issue and even after my graduation, we still contact each other constantly since the real mentorship program has no deadline or particular rules. In my case, the mentorship program has been one of the most beautiful gift from CLAMDA!