This spring, CICA launched a Mentoring for Success pilot program to help skilled African immigrants achieve professional success. The six-month pilot program pairs Twin Cities professionals with underemployed African immigrants looking to take the next step in their careers.
CICA’s Mentoring for Success program was developed in response to data which shows that despite being highly skilled and educated, African immigrants are often underemployed due to devaluation of their skills and systemic barriers. The program, which is led by CICA co-founders Dr. S. Miata Getaweh and Margretta Getaweh, and CICA board members/volunteers, Saah Kpakar and Lindsey Hanson, addresses barriers to employment and advancement through a cohort model focused on shared learning.
In addition to interviewing potential mentees and pairing mentees with mentors in managerial positions in their targeted area of employment, CICA provides ongoing training and support to program participants. Mentors receive training and tools to help them understand the barriers faced by African immigrant professionals, while mentees attend monthly capacity-building trainings focused on topics such as developing self-efficacy, resume writing, networking, and navigating workplace culture. Each mentorship pair will meet at least once a month to identify and work through career challenges and help mentees expand their networks.
Our first cohort of mentors is composed of 12 seasoned Twin Cities professionals, including mentors from Land O’Lakes and Best Buy which partnered with CICA for this pilot program. Our 12 mentees have backgrounds in accounting, finance, human resources, public health, and engineering.
Thank you to our mentors and congratulations to our mentees for taking the next step in their careers