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(Editor’s Note: Today’s post is brought to youby our friends at Capella University.Capella is anaccredited online universitydedicated to providing an exceptional, professionally-aligned education that puts you a position to succeed in your field. They offerbachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degreesas well as certificate programsfor human resources and business professionals. Enjoy the post!)

Over the past couple of weeks, our Friday posts have been focused on career development. First, we talked about finding time and having a busy professional life. Then, we talked about being ready to ask for opportunities. In this article, I want to talk about having a base of support.

Even when we can get the time and money to pursue learning and education, we can’t do it alone. We need people around us to support our efforts. Whether that’s making dinner while we’re studying for a certification exam or cutting us some slack when we’re tired after a long week of school and work. Support could also come in the form of gently nudging us when we don’t feel like studying (but we know we really need to).

That’s where mentors can come in. Mentors are people who can offer advice and counsel. They can give you tips to be productive and encouragement to stay focused. But not all mentors are the same. And in some situations, it makes sense to choose your mentors for the task at hand.

For example, let’s say you’re attending the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Annual Conference and Expo in Chicago next week. You might want to stop by the Capella University booth (#3750) at the conference and talk with them about the scholarship opportunities they’re offering. There’s a $2,000 scholarship for new students who enroll in their Master of Science in Human Resource Management program.

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If you’re goal is to pursue a degree, then think about the mentors who will help you get there. At this point, don’t think about long-term formal mentoring programs. Instead, see if you can identify individuals who have:

1) Attended Capella and can offer some insights.

2) Received a graduate degree.

3) Worked and attended school at the same time.

4) Recently transitioned into a business or HR role.

You see where I’m going with this. There’s no rule that says you have to limit yourself to one mentor. So, find mentors that can provide value toward all of the goals you’re trying to accomplish. SHRM Annual and Capella University are a great place to start.

P.S. If you’re not attending the conference, check out the other business scholarships opportunities that Capella has to offer for their bachelor’s, MBA, and doctoral programs:

  • Up to $8,000 for BS in Business
  • Up to $2,500 for MBA
  • Up to $7,000 for DBA and $8,000 for PhD in Business Management

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