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Meet Damian and Nikos
Consultant, Monitor Deloitte and ETH MTEC Student
Developing a clear career plan and executing on it can be quite overwhelming for students given all the options and pitfalls available. To tackle this issue, the MTEC Mentoring Programme at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich) pairs current students and MTEC alumni to foster personal, academic, and professional development. Damian’s overall aim as a mentor is to support his mentee Nikos in navigating through his studies, making the right career choices, and building a fruitful network.
About Damian and Nikos
Damian (on the right) is an MTEC alumni and Consultant in the Monitor Deloitte practice based in Zurich. In his free time he acts as a mentor for MTEC student Nikos (on the left).
1. Why did you become part of the MTEC Mentoring Programme?
Nikos: I initially hoped to get insights on plausible career options to set solid goals regarding my professional future. Coming up with a strategic career plan suitable to your skills and preferences can be quite a challenge. Students often tend to feel overwhelmed by the different options, thinking that they lack the necessary experience to make confident career choices. Hence, I was firmly motivated to participate in the Mentoring Programme, as it offers the opportunity to connect with individuals that can relate to the struggle above and provide meaningful guidance.
Damian: Firstly, I see it as an opportunity to help Nikos avoid making the same mistakes I did and capitalize on my learnings. Seeing my mentee succeed is quite rewarding for me. Secondly, the program also gives me the possibility to stay connected with the MTEC faculty and other MTEC alumni through regular events and meet-ups. Lastly, the discussions Nikos and I have also help me to challenge and develop my own thinking.
2. How has Damian helped you so far?
Nikos: Damian has been a tremendous help in structuring my effort and forming clear steps towards my targets through regular meetings in which he is always willing to provide feedback on my actions and suggest alternatives. In addition to this, he has broadened my network by bringing me in contact with people from different professional backgrounds, in order to gain from a wider variety of influences.
3. How would you like to inspire Nikos over the next couple of months?
Damian: Nikos is a highly motivated individual with clear goals and I don’t think he needs to be inspired. Instead, I see my role in giving him first hand insights from what I experience in the corporate world, giving him access to my professional network, and in being a sparring partner to help him develop and challenge a solid action plan for building his career. Based on his ambitions, we have defined clear milestones on which he will execute in the following months.
4. What is next?
Nikos: The official objective of the Mentoring Programme is to create a collaboration in which the mentor assists the mentee in exploring various career topics. In this context, Damian has agreed to help me in landing a proper internship, which will be the first step towards a successful professional path. However, this is not where the Mentoring Programme ends. After we’ve met all the objectives, we keep up with our casual relationship. In this context, we both gain from mutual experience in non-professional topics. I find this to be an equally valuable asset of this initiative, as it builds a reciprocal relationship and contributes to both participants’ personal development.