Fall 2019- Mentoring Program Spotlight: Mike Jones, '93 VSB, '04 MBA
Interviewed by W. Anne Krepacki '87 MBA
The Villanova MBA Alumni Network has a very actively engaged Mentoring Program. We recently had the opportunity of speaking with Mike Jones, the Chairperson of the Villanova MBA Mentoring Program. We highly encourage you to read on and find out how rewarding it can be to be a mentor and inspire others, as well as to find out how you can become involved in the program yourself.
Mike has been a Senior Manager at Deloitte & Touche LLP for 14 years. As a CPA and CISA with over 20 years of experience in the field, specializing in Capital Markets, he leads firms to optimize their regulatory reporting and improve regulatory compliance.
Anne: How long have you been a mentor in the Villanova MBA mentoring program? And what first interested you in becoming a mentor?
Mike: Upon the launch of the MBA Alumni Association in 2015, I volunteered to join the Board. Each board member was asked to lead a committee. Being more seasoned in my career, I wanted to give back and thought my experience could be helpful for students. I also had experience with the mentoring program at Deloitte. I volunteered to work with Villanova to design and launch the mentoring program and I have been mentoring students each year.
Anne: Though I'm sure you've had many rewarding experiences during your time as a mentor, what experience stands out in your mind as the most significant?
Mike: One student in their last year of the program was thinking about next steps after graduation and what the MBA program would mean for her career. We would meet monthly and discuss how things were going at school and at work. I shared some of my experiences after completing my MBA, how that changed my career path, and what I have been working on at Deloitte. She was not happy in her current job and decided to pursue an opportunity at Deloitte. She did not tell me until after she got the offer, saying that some of the experiences that I described motivated her to pursue the change. We discussed how she could be successful upon starting at Deloitte. I was impressed with her independent initiative. She did not ask me for a favor, only advice.
Anne: For those who think they "don't have what it takes to be a mentor", what would you like to tell them about the Villanova MBA mentoring program?
Mike: Everyone has something to offer. I encourage you to join the program and create a profile. Each student needs something different and their needs change over time. If you make yourself available, you could make a difference for a student at an important point in their life.
Anne: I understand that the mentoring program will be expanded this academic year. Can you please provide those important updates here, as well as any important announcements for those who are considering joining up as mentors this year?
Mike: The mentoring program for the 2019/2020 school year is expanded to include Online MBA as well as Master of Science in Analytics (MSA) students. We are encouraging students to connect in their final year; however, it is open if a student feels it is more useful earlier in their academic program. The program is supported by an online portal that allows mentors and students to create a profile and maintain their relationships. Several tools and tips are provided via Chronus. Mentors should log into the Chronus System to update their profiles, or notify Rita DiCarlo if they cannot be a mentor. New mentors can contact Rita to get a link to Chronus to create their profile. Pairing of mentors began after Labor Day, and a kick-off event will take place on Saturday, 9/21.