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ELM's mission is to help Yale F&ES students grow professionally through the guidance and advice of alumni, helping them to become environmental leaders and managers in today's world.
The Office of Career and Professional Development manages an annual mentoring program that helps YSE students in their final year at the School grow professionally by matching them with a YSE alum. Students and alumni can be matched on such things as career field, country of origin, and ethnicity. Students are able to select how they would like to be matched to their mentor. For example, a student might prefer to be matched with an alum of the same ethnicity, or location of interest.


Benefits of Becoming an ELM Mentee

  • Expand professional network
  • Improve communication skills
  • Gain exposure to job search tips and strategies 
  • Develop a long-term and meaningful relationship with a professional in your career field
  • Learn key professional skills needed in your field


  • Complement your academics with professional development
  • Be reflective about your personal growth
  • Get on-the-ground insight into your career field
  • Learn about key employers in your career field
YSEers should request an ELM mentor during their first semester. Request an ELM mentor by completing the ELM Mentee Survey.
ELM is a terrific way to formally engage students with F&ES alumni. The alumni network is a big reason why I chose Yale F&ES
— Gordon Clark M.E.M ‘07
Alum Brian Goldberg and students
Photo: Kathy Douglas
Former YSE Alumni Association Board President Brian Goldberg ’03 M.E.M. networking with students after an alumni panel in Kroon Hall.

The Matching Process and Initial Contact with Your Mentor

  • YSE students entering their second semester at the school who are interested in being mentored by a YSE alum are invited to apply. 
  • Students and alumni will be matched one-on-one based on commonalities listed in their ELM applications. Students are able to select how they would like to be matched with an alum e.g., career field, location, ethnicity, gender, etc.
  • Once a match is made a notification email will be sent to the student including an overview of the mentor’s background and contact information.
  • Students will be expected to initiate contact with their mentor by sending an introductory email within 48 hours of being notified of their match. 
  • During the initial conversation we ask the mentor and mentee to complete, sign, and date the ELM Agreement. The purpose of the agreement is to define guidelines and set expectations for both parties

Students are matched to one ELM Mentor during their time at YSE.This unique one-on-one matching allows for both the mentor and mentee to give one another their undivided attention and time, creating a mutually beneficial relationship.

Graduates Walking Horizontal

Paving the Way for Students at YSE and Beyond

As I move on in my career I am realizing more and more every day what my years at Yale F&ES did for me, and how much my time in New Haven has contributed to my success. ELM will give me a chance to reconnect to Yale F&ES, and in some small way 'pay it forward' to honor my mentors at Yale.
— Dr. Jean McLain M.F.S '97

Sample Monthly Timeline for Mentor/Mentee Interaction

Below is a sample timeline to use when formalizing goals and expectations for the first academic year of the mentor match. 

Month 1

·         Complete the ELM Mentoring Agreement and formalize expectations and goals
·         Learn about one another's backgrounds and YSE experiences
·         Consult on coursework and relevancy to future planning with your mentor
Month 2
·         Work with your mentor to develop a networking strategy for the year
·         Discuss the timeframe of job postings for your career field
·         Plan a job search strategy and summer activity if seeking
Month 3
·         Practice the art of telling a compelling professional story
·         Work with your mentor to cultivate sources for informational interviewing
·         Review professional network and strategize about connecting with employers and alumni during academic breaks
Month 4

·         Reflect and discuss professional activity to date
·         Reflect and discuss course outcomes to date
·         Review your extra-curricular activities
Month 5

·         Review with your mentor job search correspondence – email, cover letter, thank you notes, etc.
Month 6
·         Conduct a mock interview with your mentor and receive immediate feedback
Month 7
·         Practice the art of salary negotiating
Month 8
·         Review upcoming course and/or professional trajectory
·         Discuss transition from student to employee
·         Discuss ways to stay connected!