The mission of the Sawmill Mentor Network is to foster and facilitate the connection between mentor and mentees in the Rose-Hulman community, beyond the traditional and successful ad hoc approach, in a structured and systematic way. Mentors present their areas of interest and expertise. Then, mentees can identify and contact mentors they feel will be helpful to them. Apply below to become a mentor.

Sawmill Mentor Network Application

Mentor Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I participate in a mentoring program?

The Sawmill Mentoring Program seeks to offer one-on-one guidance by matching Sawmill Society members with industry experience to mentees searching for advice as they pursue their entrepreneurial vision.

This opportunity is unique to Rose-Hulman affiliates in that it is focused in entrepreneurship. It offers a chance to share others' past challenges, failures, best practices, and wins.

Aside from career advice, mentees can work with their mentors to further their understanding of non-technical aspects of starting a business.

What a mentoring relationship is not:

It is NOT professional legal, accounting, or broker-dealer representation or guidance.

It is NOT an opportunity for the mentee to pitch for fundraising.

It is NOT an opportunity for the mentor to ask to be paid for services.

How am I matched with a mentee?

The list of available mentors is posted on the Sawmill Society webpage in the mentor program section.

Applicants to be a mentee may list their top three choices of mentors based on their needs regarding their startup.

A mentor will be chosen based on their availability.

How much time can I expect to spend on this?

The ultimate amount of time spent in conversations between mentor and mentee may be determined by the pair, but the expectation is a minimum of two hours per month.

How do I know if I qualify to be a mentor?

The Sawmill Mentor Program is designed for all ranges of expertise. Whether you are just starting out or just finished your first fundraising round, the goal is to pair mentors and mentees through all stages of a startup.

How do I know if I qualify to be a mentor?

You should be prepared to review the initial documents shared with you by the mentee. After the review and initial meeting, you should be able to assist the mentee in setting expectations by offering a timeline, expected deliverables, etc.

How will I meet my mentee?

After a mentee submits an application, inquiries will be sent to their preferred mentor(s).

Once you agree to accept a mentee, an introductory email will be sent to both parties. The expectation is communication will begin within one week of introduction.

How long does a mentoring partnership last?

The one-on-one mentoring process can last as long as it needs to, or until the mentor or mentee determine there is no need to continue conversations.

Ideally, this process will generate relationships that will last a lifetime.

What protections do I have against liability?

There are additional steps to consider protecting both parties.

Any early discussions regarding the mentee’s idea, technology, or application should be conducted using non-enabling language. This means describing the concept at a high level without divulging the most important aspect or key details of the technology. One must become adept at sharing the necessary information to move the discussion forward while protecting the fundamental details of the idea.

At the appropriate time when both the mentee and mentor agree to dive deeper, a mutual non-disclosure agreement (MNDA) can be executed to protect shared confidential information. An MNDA allows the mentee-mentor discussion to move into important details to further work through more discrete business and/or technology challenges.

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