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Mentoring Matters

I decided to pay it forward by mentoring because people benefit from the help of others. Many mentors have helped me find a path and by offering my own experience and listening to the experiences of a mentee, I can help them find one too.

NPowerMATCH Mentor Spotlight

Meet Graham—NPower graduate and Senior Associate, Information Security at Prudential Financial

Graham is an NPower graduate and Senior Associate, Information Security at Prudential Financial. During his time in both the Tech Fundamentals and Cybersecurity programs, he would offer support and inspiration to his classmates. As a member of the New Jersey Alumni Council, he continues to give back to the NPower community serving on alumni panel discussions and guest lectures and recently joined NPower’s first formal mentoring program, NPowerMATCH as a mentor.

What motivated you to become an NPowerMATCH Mentor? 

Reflecting on the positive influence that mentors have had on me including other NPower classmates was a main motivator. It is up to all of us to pay it forward and help others. As NPower graduates, we have been blessed to have been provided with guidance by experienced professionals. NPower trainees greatly benefit when someone takes the time to look at their situation and uses their own experiences to provide thoughts and insights that could be valuable in helping a mentee succeed on their own journey.

What advice would you provide to alumni considering “paying it forward” through mentoring? 

Review all the materials that you have used to achieve professional and personal success and describe how these have helped you and why they may be helpful to a mentee. While there are many resources out there, mentees may be busy working and planning their next steps and may not have the time to spend researching and reviewing technology career tools and resources. My advice would be to remember the early stages of your career, how busy you were during that time, and to think about how best you can be of service to a mentee who is currently at that stage in their life.

What have you discovered is an unexpected reward of being a mentor?

The lessons shared during mentorship interactions are as valuable to mentors as they are to mentees. It is great to be able to learn alongside a mentee and develop new professional skills throughout the platform. It is also great to learn from a mentee’s experiences. While mentees may be in the early stages of their career journeys, they still have valuable life lessons to offer and it is a wonderful experience learning together as a team.  

The pandemic has changed the way we work and interact professionally. What has mentoring during the pandemic been like for you?

Mentoring during the pandemic has been going well. Through the help of technology and various platforms, we are still able to maintain regular contact and build a strong relationship through various web chat platforms, via phone and video chat. We have found connecting weekly for 10-to-15-minute calls and chats to touch base in addition to having more in-depth monthly video chats works well. 

Who has been a mentor that has inspired you?

Denny Windgassen and Suryaprakash Nalluri, the co-team leads from the Web Application Vulnerability Assessment Team at Citi have been a mentor team that has inspired me. I interned on their team following NPower’s Cybersecurity training program. Even though I was working from Warren, NJ and the Application Vulnerability Assessment team was based in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Denny and Surya went above and beyond to check on my progress, provide opportunities for growth and stretch assignments, and to ensure there were many opportunities for me to engage with the team even while I was working in a separate location. They sought out ways to provide learning opportunities for me as their mentee and as a result significant professional growth took place and I am able to share all that I have learned with my mentee. 

Want to change lives through mentorship? Learn more and apply at npower.org/mentor to become a mentor for the next cycle.

#NationalMentorshipMonth
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Mentoring Matters

I decided to pay it forward by mentoring because people benefit from the help of others. Many mentors have helped me find a path and by offering my own experience and listening to the experiences of a mentee, I can help them find one too.
—Graham from NPower New Jersey

NPower classes are currently being held virtually due to COVID-19.

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