The Women Connecting Women Program is a unique mentorship program offered to our women interns at VMware. This year it was hosted virtually for the first time in India. In our continued efforts to promote a culture of mentorship at VMware, the program is strategically designed to provide developmental opportunities for both the mentors and mentees, with the objective of exposing woman interns to a more extensive women’s network at VMware. This program pairs women employees at VMware with a current woman intern outside of her direct team who will be mentored throughout the internship, thus strengthening women’s community in technology and enhancing an inclusive work environment.
How does it work?
The assigned mentor connects with the intern to provide professional development, career guidance, and networking. She aims to enhance the internship experience by helping her mentee build strong professional relationships and valuable insights on opportunities for career growth as a woman in the industry. The mentors, via this program, get to fine-tune their mentorship skills and amplify their professional awareness with varied perspectives. For the interns, this program is an opportunity for them to develop professional relationships with women working in corresponding functional areas and eventually build confidence in the industry they intend to head on to. The program also benefits them by giving an insider’s perspective on navigating their career possibilities and an understanding of working efficiently in a corporate environment.
This year at VMware India, the program went live with 84 women interns and their 84 women mentors. The response from these mentor-mentee pairs has been overwhelming and positive. When asked about their experience here’s what some of the interns had to say:
“The best part is that you get to connect one on one with someone more experienced in the same organization. You can have a very friendly relationship where you get to ask even the silliest of questions and you can discuss or ask for all the technical guidance from your mentor” – Richa Agrawal, Intern – Cloud Services
“This program helped me to learn from my mentor’s experience and challenge which she faces during her initial career start. I was able to seek guidance from her for my challenges (both technical and non-technical) and it has helped me gain professional confidence.” – Pallavi Soni, Intern – End User Computing
“The best part is we have someone other than our team and it is your mentor within VMware who is just ping away from you and you can ask her anything which is wonderful. I have personally built a very strong bond with my mentor and enjoyed this program a lot.”- Mahima Kothari, Intern, Central Quality Engineering
Delving into the journey experienced at the other end, learn what some of this year’s mentors had to say.
“Meeting the newer generation, learning about new things that are happening in academia, and interacting with them has been quite fun through this program.” – Vandna Sharma, Member of Technical Staff – AVI Research & Development
“The mentor-mentee bond was very informal and more like that of a buddy. This helped both to open and help each other without any hesitation. Also, since the interns were remotely onboarded and had come from a college environment, a program like this has helped them understand corporate culture and other etiquettes that they would otherwise hesitate to ask tech lead/mentor in their respective teams.” – Geetha Kamath, Member of Technical Staff – Quality Engineering
“Connecting the young and the experienced, made for a win-win situation. The interns have a platform to avoid the best possible mistakes and plan their careers with much confidence. The Mentors, on the other hand, have the chance to refresh their career moments, check on how far they have reached and how they are implementing the ideas shared with the interns. I am so glad for this opportunity and look forward to more such collaborations in the future.” – Madhavi Kilari, Sr. Business Analyst, Global Commission Finance System Support
The attendees gathered before the program for 2021 ended and each of them expressed their journey with the Women Connecting Women program in one word.
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