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Skidmore College


Career Development Center

ZEN Mentoring Program

Program Overview

Based in Skidmore’s Career Development Center (CDC), the ZEN Mentoring Program matches Skidmore students at the start of their junior year with recent Skidmore alumni/ae who have similar career interests.

Student-mentor pairs meet (virtually or in-person) throughout the academic year, with a focus on helping the students achieve their career goals.

Aerial view of the Skidmore campus

Mentors share their experiences at Skidmore and in the working world, listen to their student-partners’ concerns, and look for ways to support them in achieving their goals. This can take many forms, including: 

  • Identifying career goals and the steps necessary to achieve them
  • Discussing resources and strategies used by the mentors, at Skidmore and beyond
  • Reviewing students’ resumes, cover letters, LinkedIn profiles, and other tools and providing feedback
  • Recommending networking groups, job boards, and opportunities that might be beneficial  

To foster a sense of program cohesion, student participants are invited to get together at several informal campus meetings throughout the year, and mentors are invited to attend virtual gatherings. These meetings are an opportunity to connect with others, reflect on challenges, and share experiences. 

Autumn at Skidmore

2023-2024 ZEN Mentoring Program and Application

We’re excited to be able to accommodate 60 student-mentor pairs in 2023-2024. Members of the class of 2025 are invited to apply this summer and will attend a brief orientation session if accepted. Matched student-mentor pairs will begin meeting when the program kicks off in early October.


Class of 2025 students interested in being paired with a mentor during academic year 2023-2024 should apply here.

The application deadline for the 2023-2024 academic year is Friday, Sept. 1.



Skidmore mentors/alumni/ae interested in participating in the ZEN Mentoring Program can apply here.



The Zankel Experience Network (ZEN)

The Mentoring Program is part of the Zankel Experience Network (ZEN). ZEN was established in 2020 by Jimmy Zankel ’92 and Pia Scala-Zankel ’92 to encourage the support of like-minded donors who hope to expand Skidmore’s commitment to experiential learning, including the Summer Experience Fund, Faculty-Student Summer Research, and the Mentoring Program.

ZEN logo