Guidance: Zach Long wants you to dip into the mentoring program

January 18, 2018

The recently introduced Mentoring Program from the Speed School Student Council is designed to foster relationships between alumni and students, as a way to help see the forest through the trees. For Director of Community Relations at the SSSC Zach Long, the mentoring program offers students an opportunity to network, to meet other like minded individuals who have experienced the rigors of the school, and who can help students to see the light at the end of the tunnel. To help facilitate that program, the Long and the SSSC are hosting a Dip-Off, a chip dip themed cook off, where participants are judged by attendees as to who has the best aperitif.

A sophomore in the department of Bioengineering, Long hopes to complete his MEng before attending medical school. Motivated by his time as an Eagle Scout, Long has training in field medicine, a skill that he has employed on hiking and camping treks in the past. He has a cool calm under pressure that helps him focus on his education, and wants to share that careful optimism with his classmates, by helping to introduce them to mentors like Alan Kleier, '76 Bachelors, '77 MEng alumnus, Speed School Alumni Fellow, and member of the Speed School Industrial Board of Advisors, who can help assuage fears over grades and specific classes.

“Students get bogged down with how hard classes are, and the alumni help them get through it. A lot of freshmen in and struggle. You’ve got harder classes, you’re not meeting them every day. Now you can go to class three times a day, now what do you do the rest of the time. You’ve opened up opportunity to get involved in other things. This is probably a lot of their first times away from home. You’ve got so many opportunities,” says Long.

He adds, “There is such a high expectation on kids now. Finding ways to meet that can seem unobtainable right now. I’m looking at co-ops right now, and there are so many expectations. I feel like the mentoring program allows people to see where other people are coming from. You come into college and you don’t have a framework. When you come to college, you make your own map.”