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YSPH Alumni Engagement Program

I love the opportunity to engage with students who will be our next generation of young professionals. I really like being able to share the path I took in public health and giving the students ideas for what their paths could look like.

Caroline Stampfel, MPH
Alumni Mentor

Program Overview

Our goal is to create meaningful and satisfactory opportunities for you to engage with students at YSPH. In addition to the YSPH Mentoring Program, we are pleased to offer you more “transactional” type volunteer activities. These activities will, by their nature, require a significantly shorter time commitment than our traditional mentor program. We hope that these additional options will create a platform that enables more alumni to participate. Below we have assembled resources and descriptions to aid you in choosing your preferred volunteer opportunities and to help you prepare once you have been contacted by a student. While much of the responsibility for reaching out lies with our students, we do ask that if you volunteer, you will respond to students who reach out to you within a reasonable time frame. You are welcome to change your selections at any time by contacting us.

Alumni Engagement Plus

During your opt-in process, in addition to choosing which activities you prefer, you will also choose how many students you would be willing to assist during a 90-day period. This timeframe will help to ensure that the “transactions” with your preferred number of students have time to organically conclude before the potential commitment to new students arises.

Interview Preparation

  • Commitment: Approximately 90 minutes
  • Student Selection - Ongoing

Help students prepare for upcoming interviews by providing critical feedback on interviewing skills. Requires contact in person, by phone or electronic meeting.
A mock – or practice – interview simulates an actual job interview. This process aids students in learning to answer difficult questions, develop interview strategies, improve communication skills and reduce stress prior to an actual job interview. We expect that the interview itself would require approximately 30 minutes with an additional 30-60 minutes to provide feedback to the student.

Interviewing Tips:

Most common interview questions: (you should feel free to develop your own questions; these are just to get you started)

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • What are your weaknesses?
  • Why should we choose you for this job?
  • What are your hobbies outside of work?
  • Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
  • Why are you leaving your current position?
  • What are your main strengths?
  • Why do you want to work here?
  • What motivates you?
  • Do you prefer working by yourself or in a team?
  • What are your salary expectations?
  • Tell me about an achievement you are proud of?
  • Tell me about a challenging situation and how you overcame it.
  • What do you know about the company?
  • What would your colleagues say are your best qualities?
  • What experience can you bring to this job from your previous role?
  • What makes a good team leader/manager?
  • What do you consider to be your biggest failure?
  • How do you deal with pressure at work?
  • Why is there a gap in your work history?

Please note the following interview questions are considered illegal and inappropriate:

Any questions that are meant to reveal your age, race, national origin, citizenship, gender, religion, marital status, sexual orientation and arrest records are illegal as follows:

  • How old are you?
  • What are your religious beliefs?
  • What is your ancestry, national origin, or birth place?
  • What is your native language?
  • Are you single, married, divorced, or widowed?
  • Do you have any disabilities?
  • Have you ever been arrested?
  • What is your sexual orientation?
  • Are your parents citizens?
  • Do you have any children and/or are you planning on having more?

Cover Letter Review

  • Commitment: Varies, but short term
  • Student Selection - Ongoing

Help students to compete in the job market with a well written cover letter. Requires email or phone contact to receive, review and discuss recommendations.
Job applicants who present well written cover letters are more likely to be invited to interview. A well written cover letter is designed to optimize a candidate’s chances in the selection process. Many candidates who enclose cover letters often make mistakes in presentation and content.

During the review we would ask you to assess the various parts of the cover letter for content and effectiveness in conveying their message. You would then give feedback to the student, preferably in writing.
Information on what makes a good cover letter:

Industry/Organization Question

  • Commitment: Varies but short term
  • Student Selection – Ongoing

Help students become acquainted with your field of expertise or the company you work for. Requires email or phone contact to respond to questions.
Share your expertise and industry knowledge! We encourage students to explore the breadth of the field of public health. With your help they will be able to gather firsthand information on their specialty of choice or perhaps on the actual company where you work.


  • Commitment: Minimum October - June
  • Student Selection – One time per year during October

The Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) Mentorship Program connects students to alumni who share common interests and have relevant professional experience. Students benefit from a network of accomplished alumni and, in turn, alumni can give back to their alma mater by contributing to the professional development of the next generation of health care leaders.

Details on our mentoring program,with tips and suggestions.