Building success in today's business climate requires more than scholarly academic pursuits. It also requires knowledge of the business environment and the ability to negotiate within it. Seattle University has been greatly effective in building leaders who meet these criteria. A vital element in this success has been the Albers Mentor Program. By involving high level executives with our students, we provide an opportunity to meld the "real world" with that of the classroom.

The Mentor Program at a Glance

Each year Puget Sound business executives volunteer their time to mentor Seattle University students. From October to June, the mentor and a small group of students meet to discuss business issues, career paths, personal concerns, and professional experiences. Samples of mentor group activities include presenting true-to-life case studies, inviting students to strategy meetings, providing an overview of a company, arranging meetings with company executives, etc. The time committed is flexible, but the groups generally meet every 4 to 6 weeks throughout the year, with each group setting its own agenda and goals. To kick off this process, the Albers School hosts a Mentor Fair in September which provides the arena for mentors and students to meet.

Since the inception of the Mentor Program in the 1990-91 school year, over 2,000 business leaders and 4,500 students have participated.

Mentor Characteristics

Seattle University looks for mentors who are established executives with a pattern of success in their careers. Since many of our graduate students have substantial business background, they are in search of individuals who are high level executives such as CEOs, Presidents, Vice Presidents, upper level managers, or business owners. It is vitally important that mentors be committed to education and willing to share their expertise and experience.

Getting Involved

If you would like to get involved in the growth and development of tomorrow's business leaders, and have some fun as well, contact the Albers Career Center by phone at (206) 296-5687 or by e-mail at for more information and to get a brochure. If you know of other business leaders whom you feel would make excellent mentors, please call and give us their names and we will follow up with them.

Mentor Resources

Mentor Willie Aikens from Slotay, Inc., his wife, and mentor Vicki Nickinovich from Nickinovich Research and Consulting, Inc.
Mentor Willie Aikens from Slotay, Inc., his wife, and mentor Vicki Nickinovich from Nickinovich Research and Consulting, Inc.

As a mentor in the SU program for the last 15 years I have found the program to be extremely rewarding and a win-win for both the students and me…The mentor-mentee relationship allows the student to be open about their aspirations in a safe conversation with an objective leader who can challenge their thinking and encourage their choices. It has been a great opportunity for me to stay connected with SU and keep in tune with the next generation of business leaders.

Brian Webster CEO, Kestra Medical Technologies, Inc.