College Mentor Nights

Purpose of PSEC Mentor Nights

The PSEC Mentor Nights are hosted at participating colleges and universities with the purpose of giving engineering students (freshmen through seniors, & occasionally high school students) an opportunity to ask questions in person from a variety of practicing engineers, engineering alumni, and faculty about the wide spectrum of engineering disciplines, professions, career pathways, continuing education post-graduation, professional registration considerations, responsibilities, and ethics over food and refreshments.

Description of PSEC Mentor Nights

PSEC Mentor Nights are held on a weekday evening typically from 6 to 8 pm hosted at the participating university or college with mentor tables identified by table top sign that identifies Mentor’s name, engineering discipline and/or profession. Mentors usually bring some physical examples of their work, or something to help focus the student’s attention. They may also have a laptop presentation or engineering drawings to show, a paper handout to give the students, and information about their societies events and scholarship information. Food (typically pizza) and refreshments are available for mentors and students and the costs are reimbursed by PSEC.

On a typical Mentor Night the participation can range from 20 to 50 volunteer engineer Mentors, with 50 to 150 students attending. Mentors are comprised of practicing engineers from a wide spectrum of disciplines and industries for “Mentor” discussions with college and high school students.  Ideally, one-on-one discussions are preferred, with the goal being no more than five students are talking to a single Mentor at once, which on a busy night becomes almost a mini-presentation, with some individual questions being answered. Past mentor nights have had students rotate between mentor to mentor freely or have designated someone to prompt rotations every fifteen minutes over the course of two hours. There are no expectations to have an ongoing or follow-up mentoring relationship with any student unless both parties desire it.

Students can:

The events are coordinated between the University Focal and a PSEC Mentor Coordinator. The University Focal may be the faculty advisor for the Student Engineering Organization organizing the event, or staff at the college through their student activities program. They plan the room reservation, food, AV, signage, parking, and coordinates student attendance, and may also coordinate Mentor attendance through current and former faculty, alumni, and other organizations that support the college’s efforts. The PSEC Mentor Coordinator will determine the date, time & location of the Mentor Night event. They will determine how many students are forecasted to attend (based on recent history), how many Mentors are needed, and if any special requests for types of engineers is received from the school. They communicate the date and number of Mentors needed to the PSEC Council (at monthly meetings, and/or by email).  And closer to the event, let the PSEC reps. know if more Mentors are needed, including any focused needs of type of engineering discipline. Currently PSEC Mentor Coordinators create a flyer and set up an Eventbrite for Mentor registration, and send out reminders, parking and driving directions.

The Dean of the College of Engineering (or someone representing the school) usually speaks briefly at the beginning of the event (thanking the engineers and encouraging the students to effectively utilize the opportunity).  Usually the PSEC Coordinator speaks briefly as well, about the way the sessions will be conducted, and a few remarks about PSEC.  Sometimes there are guest speakers or a small panel of speakers at the beginning of the event, before the sessions begin. A brief announcement is made when the event has concluded.

List of Recent Colleges and Universities with the Month they typically Host a PSEC Mentor Night (listed alphabetically)

PSEC Member Societies Invited to “Dinner with Industry” on April 9th 2015

This event is not a PSEC Mentor Night as typically coordinated by PSEC, however all PSEC Member Societies are encouraged to support “Dinner with Industry” hosted at Everett Community College (EvCC) by volunteering to attend. Below is the invitation by the the EvCC Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Student Club which is under the Society of Women Engineers Pacific Northwest section (SWE-PNW):

My name is Dilraj Bal, I am the vice-president of Society of Women Engineers (SWE) at Everett Community College.  EvCC SWE club is a small collegiate interest group under the SWE-PNW section and our faculty adviser is Kristine Washburn.

We are organizing a “Dinner with Industry” on April 9th from 6-8 pm and we would love it if you could attend!  Our goal is to have students learn, ask questions and get excited about engineering.  I want to stress that we are looking for all engineers, both men and women, to attend and share their experience with our students. In return, SWE/EvCC will pay for your dinner and you get the opportunity to interact with a group of promising future engineers. You are encouraged to share this invitation with your colleagues in the engineering profession.

You can direct any questions as well as register for the event by contacting me, Dilraj Bal, at

Once you have registered for the event I will send you a reminder email when the date gets closer.  Enclosed in that email will be directions to the school, a map of the campus, the building the event will be taking place in, and where to park.  I will also attach a print out parking pass for you to put on your dashboard when you arrive at the college.

Thank you for your time and please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

Dilraj Bal
EvCC SWE Vice-President
EvCC SWE Liaison
Everett Community College Student

PSEC Mentor Night hosted at Highline College (HC) on April 21st 2015

Tuesday April 21st, 2015, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Highline College (HC): This is a "PSEC Mentor Night" coordinated by PSEC and hosted at Highline College in Des Moines, WA. Note this is a one-time evening event with no long term "mentoring" expected or anticipated. Volunteer "mentors" are needed to help answer student’s questions and share their experience over pizza and refreshments at table top settings. Volunteers are asked to bring some physical examples of their work, or something to help focus the student's attention. They may also have a laptop to help illustrate their work or engineering drawings or paper handouts to show, information about their society’s events and scholarship information as applicable. Students rotate freely between tables identified by table top sign that identifies volunteer name, title, company, engineering discipline, and/or industry over the course of two hours. Ideally one-on-one discussions are preferred, with the goal being no more than five students are talking with a single "Mentor" at once. If you are interested please register on our Eventbrite site..