In this issue: Spring 2020


Mentorship Key to Career Development


Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management students receive career guidance, hands-on training from mentors

Nicole Vanderburg (BSBA 2019) would be the first to say that her mentor went above and beyond in providing fellow classmates and her with invaluable training in the beverage industry.

From co-hosting two wine tastings with Vanderburg—for which he generously offered special wines—to introducing her to a noted German winemaker at a winemaker’s dinner, Classic Beverage Company General Manager Ken Theobald provided crucial career guidance as well as intellectual growth, she said.

It is perhaps no coincidence, then, that Theobald won Daniels’ Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management 2019 LEAD Mentor of the Year award.

“Ken thoughtfully confirmed my interests and goals, and then helped me explore my passion,” Vanderburg wrote in her Mentor of the Year nomination letter. “His readiness and desire to mentor not only myself, but also my classmates and those he is surrounded by, show how much of a positive role model he is.”

Vanderburg is not the only Fritz student with high praise for her mentor. Claire Caviglia (BSBA 2019) is extremely grateful for the advice and many opportunities provided by Matthew Anderson, area managing director and general manager of the Renaissance Denver Stapleton Hotel. Not only did he help her prepare for interviews, he advised her on management strategies, good leadership and the challenge of hotel renovations.

“Perhaps Matt’s greatest leadership trait is his belief in people,” she said. “He has always been 100% supportive of my dreams and career choices.”

Theobald and Anderson are just two of the many mentors who have shaped students’ lives through the highly regarded Ann & David Hoffman LEAD Mentorship Program. LEAD—Learning by Example, Attaining Distinction—strives to put Fritz students well ahead of their graduating peers through intensive mentorship relationships and opportunities.

LEAD includes both peer-to-peer and professional mentoring throughout the four years students spend at the school. Professional mentors help students expand their networks, prepare for their college-to-career transitions, fine-tune job applications, prepare for the Fritz Knoebel Career Fair and interviews, and navigate their career paths.

The School of Accountancy, Reiman School of Finance and Daniels Career Services also offer formal mentorship programs. Since Career Services’ Executive Career Mentorship Program was launched in 2004, more than 2,600 graduate students have been matched with senior-level business executives in the Denver area to sharpen their career goals, learn best practices and build professional networks.

To become a mentor, contact

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