The External Adviser Program (EAP) gives Yale-NUS students access to advisers and mentors who have a wider range of experience than the CIPE or Yale-NUS faculty can develop internally. You can tap their experience to explore careers, strengthen your network, and sharpen your interpersonal skills.
CIPE recommends that you approach External Advisers just as you would a professional who has no affiliation with the College: keep your communications concise; offer to meet at a time and place that’s convenient for them; propose a short meeting, such as 30 minutes; and complete any preparatory work they suggest. If you have questions about how to conduct informational interviews, ask your CIPE adviser.
Consult our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), below; or email email@example.com to learn more.
Although it’s possible to get through life without any advice at all, most people look back on their experiences and remember valuable advice they received from people who’d gone before them. Especially if your interests are specific or unique, the best advice you can get may be outside the walls of the College.
External advisers have different backgrounds and experiences (you can view their profiles via the links above). If an existing member of the panel has experience relevant to your interests, that person would be a good choice. If you are seeking advice in an area where no member of the panel has experience, you can also approach your CIPE adviser with ideas about how to expand the panel in directions that meet student interests.
External Advisers are not paid by Yale-NUS. They have full-time jobs of their own and participate in the program in their free time because they enjoy contact with young people like yourself.
Since they are unpaid and busy, CIPE recommends that you approach External Advisers just as you would a professional who has no affiliation with the College: keep your communications concise; offer to meet at a time and place that’s convenient for them; propose a short meeting, such as 30 minutes; and complete any preparatory work they suggest. If you have questions about how to go conduct informational interviews, review our whiteboard video or ask your CIPE adviser.
What constitutes “proper” dress depends on context. Your clothing is a tool to help you accomplish your goals, and unless your goals are related to fashion, a reasonable goal for almost all informational meetings is to wear something that is so well adapted to the meeting context that the other person doesn’t notice what you are wearing. An easy rule of thumb is to wear what the other person is wearing.
Rather than promulgating hard and fast rules, CIPE recommends that you develop a process of inquiry. What will the adviser likely be wearing? Where is the meeting? What do other people usually wear at that venue?
T-shirts, shorts, and sandals are not typically seen in the workplaces of our external advisers, and for this reason are best avoided in informational meetings with them.
Congratulations! First, send a thank-you note to the adviser; they donated valuable time to your personal and professional growth. Next, send a quick note to your CIPE adviser to update us as well.
Good advising meetings often yield “due-outs” or “homework” for the advisee. If your adviser recommended reading, research, reflection, or other tasks, be sure you commit to these and follow up with the adviser when you have completed the work. You won’t receive a grade for this work, and you won’t be paid—but then, neither was the adviser!
If the adviser makes an introduction, be sure to treat that person respectfully as well.
Also consider what you learned about the adviser. Although they are accomplished professionals themselves, with busy schedules and well-developed networks, they might be interested in campus happenings or introductions you can make. At a minimum, you should have learned enough about them to know how they manage their schedule and communications, and what you can do to make a possible future meeting easier.
Everyone has a bad meeting now and then, and CIPE and our external advisers know this. two important considerations:
Thank you for your support! As an External Adviser, you have the opportunity to inspire young people who share your interests and values. Here are some answers to common questions about the program:
Your time is valuable, and both the College and our students respect that.
As a member of the External Adviser Program, you are a volunteer: you are free to modulate your time according to other demands on your schedule and whatever seasonality affects your work.
For your background, Yale-NUS students are on break from May-July and again during the month of December; during these windows, demand will fall as students depart Singapore on travel, internships, or study abroad. During the early weeks of each semester—August/September and January/February each year—students have more free time and are more likely to seek your advice and assistance.
If you find that students are requesting more time than you have, feel free to communicate this directly to them, or to the EAP coordinator, Paul Wilt (firstname.lastname@example.org). As with your personal mentoring activities, you should not feel obligated to take more meetings than you can accommodate.
One of the program’s goals is to teach students that different people have different scopes of expertise. If the student is simply asking questions beyond your domain of experience, you can just let them know.
If students are seeking help beyond what you’re comfortable giving—for instance, requesting introductions or support for a job application which you’re not in a position to make—please also provide this feedback to CIPE (email@example.com), so we can adjust our training programs accordingly.
We believe that soliciting and integrating feedback is a critical part of the personal growth process, and we aim to teach those skills in part through this program. You should find our students intent on improving their relationship with you, as well as their overall ability to create and maintain professional relationships in general. When you see opportunities for improvement, feel free to communicate them directly to the student, or EAP Coordinator Paul Wilt (firstname.lastname@example.org).
CIPE is very interested in feedback about the External Adviser Program, and committed to making the program a positive experience for all involved. Contact EAP Coordinator Paul Wilt (email@example.com) to discuss your thoughts.
CIPE’s External Adviser program engages professionals from the Singapore community as career advisers and mentors to students. These professionals can provide a range of perspectives and experience far broader than what the College could develop internally.
If you are advising a student whose interests are outside the scope of your own experience, consider encouraging the student to take advantage of the External Adviser Program. Students can see adviser profiles and can consult with their CIPE adviser about how to approach and secure the support of an external adviser.
If one of your professional or social contacts is interested in getting more involved with the College, consider referring them to CIPE (firstname.lastname@example.org) as an external adviser. External advisers are not paid, but like most of us, they find it rewarding to mentor young people. Thank you for your support.