Research shows having a mentor increases confidence, retention and job placement rates particularly among historically underrepresented ethnic groups.

MESA’s mentorship program works to pair MESA students from universities and community colleges with a professionals in the STEM field. This year we have 3 companies participating: PG&E, Western Digital, and Cisco. Cisco is the founding company partner having provided mentors and professional development for students for four year.

This year’s cohort has a total of 45 students and mentors from the three companies. We hope to increase this number in the future and provide more professional development opportunities for all MESA students! 

Recently two mentees from that last cohort were accepted into the Cisco internship program and six mentees were ultimately hired as full time employees with the technology giant.

Mamta is one of the recent mentees who earned an internship at Cisco. She’s an industrial and systems engineering third year at San Jose State and her second year as a MESA mentee.

“The MESA mentorship program with [my mentor] Noe has been an enriching experience. Noe provided me with a lot of insight, advice, and career development opportunities. He helped me find the internship that aligned the best with my future career goals, and assisted me in how to respectfully turn down an offer. From the practice interviews to resume reviews to meeting up over coffee, Noe has been a phenomenal mentor and I am thankful.”

Noe said being a mentor is a fulfilling experience and comes back every year.

“Ultimately, I define success in life as being able to help the next generation of educationally disadvantaged students to achieve and surpass my own accomplishments. I’ve been a mentor for 4 years with the program — can’t stop, won’t stop!”said Noe, a Cisco mentor.