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The leading knowledge exchange for Data Center, IT and Mission Critical professionals.

7x24 Exchange Mentoring Program

Mentoring Program

The Data Center industry is in a constant state of change. Learning is never complete and demand for qualified, experienced critical infrastructure specialists continues to grow. Yet, the next generation of potential mission critical professionals is dwindling. With that in mind, 7×24 Exchange is excited to provide this free mentoring program to anyone with an interest in helping to enrich the data center profession.

About the Program

The Mentor/Protégé Program provides students and early career professionals with opportunities to receive meaningful 1-on-1 career guidance from a practicing industry professional. Conversations within this program may center on career goals and aspirations, competency improvement and sharing of general knowledge of the mission critical operations field. The time commitment is generally an hour per month.

Benefits of Participating

For mentors, “giving back” through the 7×24 Exchange Mentoring Program can be rewarding. Shape the next generation of mission critical professionals by sharing your passion for the mission critical industry and make a difference in a student’s or early career professional’s life!

For protégés, learning about the mission critical operations field from a trusted, experienced mentor can make a real difference in pursuing a career in the ever-growing data center industry.

Engagement Scenarios

The following engagement scenarios describe the type of interactions that might occur in the mentoring program, as well as the average time commitment. It is up to the protégé to work with their mentor to determine what level of interaction is appropriate given goals, availability, workloads, distance, etc.

Minimal Engagement
This type of engagement is when the protégé prefers a small amount of interaction or outcomes from the mentoring relationship. Engagements of this type tend to be less structured and more ad-hoc in nature, perhaps with an occasional phone call or email during the mentoring period. The protégé may wish to ask the mentor general questions about the profession or get one or two bits of feedback or tips. 1-2 hours total time commitment per semester.

Average Engagement
This type of engagement is when the protégé prefers to have regular, more meaningful interactions with the mentor. Typically, this would involve a regular phone call, texts, and/or emails, discussion about career goals, feedback on resume or course work, etc. In this type of engagement, there is more outcome expected by both the protégé and the mentor. 1 hour of time commitment per month.

Enhanced Engagement
This type of engagement is when the protégé prefers to have numerous, meaningful interactions with the mentor. In addition to regular phone calls, texts, emails, etc., they would discuss career options, get direct feedback on resume, introductions to industry professionals, etc. Also, in this type of engagement, proteges may be invited to local or national conferences, given tours of data centers, or more. 1 hour of time commitment per week.

Get Started Here…

If you are interested in participating in the program as a mentor or protégé, read through the details below, then submit the interest form at the bottom of this page.

If you are a school or company and want to learn more about how this program works, please contact mentoring@7x24exchange.org.

Tell me more about becoming a mentor…

Mentor Roles and Responsibilities

  • Mentors provide developing students and early career professionals with the support necessary to advance their career.
  • A mentor is someone who’s knowledge and experience provides tools to develop the protégé and ensure professional growth.
  • Helping a student advance in his/her career is undoubtedly a rewarding experience which provides data center industry professionals with the opportunity to “give back.”
  • Taking the time to get to know and respect a young mission critical industry professional and share your experiences is a powerful way to impact the future of the industry.

Mentor Eligibility, Requirements and Recommendations:

  • Have at least five years of industry experience.
  • Ability to mentor 1-2 protégés  per academic year.
  • Meet with protégé for a minimum of one hour, once per semester.  Meetings can be video conference, in person or by phone. More frequent informal communication is encouraged as personal schedules allow.
  • Commit to being accessible and engaged for the duration of the one year mentoring relationship.
  • Be willing to share your personal and professional experience, insights, and network with your protégé.
  • We recommend attending the 7×24 Exchange International Spring and Fall Conferences and chapter events that gather protégé and mentors together.
  • Be a good listener, have a sense of humor, and enjoy your mentoring experience.

* Mentors don’t have to live in the respective state of the protégé in order to participate.

Tell me more about becoming a protégé…

Protégé Roles and Responsibilities

  • Establish effective communication with mentor
  • Be proactive in seeking advice from an outside source in his or her career of choice
  • Open to advice and feedback
  • Be prepared when attending mentor session with notes, goals, progress information
  • Develop an individual or personal growth plan with a timeline of goals and progress
  • Seek guidance and advice of a trained, experienced professional in the areas of career expectations and demands
  • Willingness to share information on academic struggles in career-related topics with their mentor in and effort to receive advice/counseling that will be beneficial in their academic and/or professional success.
  • Be respectful of time allotments, confidentiality, and punctuality for meeting sessions

Protégé Eligibility and Requirements

  • Students, 18 and over, that have declared a major and are actively pursuing their degree in an MCO field. Students who are under the age of 18 must get permission from their parents or legal guardians to participate.
  • Early Career professionals with an interest in advancing their career in the MCO field
  • Commitment to meet with mentor as required throughout the one-year period

* Protégés do not have to live in the respective state of the mentor in order to participate.

What if I need additional resources or to contact someone?

We have prepared some informational resources for anyone interested in the program. Feel free to share them with your colleagues, co-workers, or friends and family.

Protégé Flyer
Download/View (PDF)

Mentor Flyer
Download/View (PDF)

General Information Flyer
Download/View (PDF)

Program Coordinators
Michael Swetz, Program Coordinator

Denman Wall, Program Administrator

Sign Up Today!

Mentor/Protégé Interest Form
We are currently looking for mentors and protégés to be a part of our mentoring program. Use the following form to sign up.

    Your State/Province (Required):

    Your Country:

    Do you want to be a Mentor or Protégé?

    Knowledge Area Focus:
    If you are a mentor, what areas of knowledge are you willing to share? If you are a protégé, what do you want to learn about?

    Sharing a bit about you and your goals helps us to make accurate mentoring matches. Briefly share why you want to participate in the Mentoring program (Required):
    Enter your Comments (2000 characters remaining):

    Job Level

    Years of Service

    Are you a member of 7x24 Exchange International?

    Some of our program partner schools incorporate a curriculum that integrates the mentoring program and we need to know if you're participating in that curriculum. Founding schools include Cleveland Community College, Southern Regional Technical College, Nash Community College, Wake Tech Community College and UNC Charlotte.

    Are you a student at any of the listed schools?

    Are you a faculty member at any of the listed schools?

    Which partner school?

    Which 7x24 Exchange Chapter(s) are you a member of?

    By filling out this form and checking the box below, I acknowledge that I meet the general requirements of becoming a mentor or protégé as detailed on this site and that I am 18 years of age or older. If I am 17 years of age or younger, I understand that I will need written parental or guardian permission to participate in the program. I understand that personal information submitted through this form will only be used for the mentoring program. I also understand that 7x24 Exchange believes that generating successful and sustainable mentor-protégé pairs is the most important factor of program success. I understand in order to achieve the best possible match some participants may not be matched instantly.

    Yes, I agree

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