For National Volunteer Month, we’re sharing stories of volunteers who are impacting the lives of StreetWise mentees and job seekers. Fitch Ratings is a subsidiary of our partner, Fitch Group.
by Anne Tricerri, StreetWise Volunteer
Director, Infrastructure and Project Finance Group at Fitch Ratings
April 27th, 2023
Career development requires much more than academics. Professional skills such as effective communication and networking are honed through experience. StreetWise Partners provides a welcoming and supportive environment for mentees to develop these skills and define their goals. I continue volunteering year after year because the program fills a gap in formal education and delivers results.
A job search can be intimidating and time consuming. Having a clear goal of the job you want and seeking a job in a field you are enthusiastic about makes this process much easier. My employer, Fitch Ratings, had an information session about volunteer opportunities at StreetWise and the program resonated with me due to a prior job search.
Before joining Fitch Ratings over six years ago, I was already well into my working career and wanted to pursue a role that better aligned with my passions. Through networking, I found a role at Fitch Ratings that combines my strong interest in infrastructure with my background in finance. I had always sought jobs through postings on university career websites. This time I pushed myself to network by sending cold emails in addition to reaching out to my contacts. I would not have found my current role at Fitch, which has been a great fit for me, without networking.
Universities do not teach how to build a network and prepare for interviews. Even for entry level jobs, interviewers often expect that candidates are well versed in the industry. It is almost impossible to effectively prepare for certain interviews without receiving guidance from professionals in the field. Many students do not have these connections and do not know what to expect in interviews. StreetWise provides mentees with an instant network of professionals who can provide invaluable first-hand advice.
I have had the pleasure of seeing many mentees succeed at StreetWise. The program structure encourages mentees to embrace daunting tasks. Some mentees are very shy and are reluctant to send a cold email or speak in front of large groups. StreetWise provides a low-risk environment for mentees to try new things and receive feedback.
During a finance interview at a StreetWise Mock Interview Day, I started asking a mentee technical questions. She did not know how to answer some questions but saw this experience as an opportunity. Afterwards she followed up with me to continue practicing. StreetWise participants are resourceful and determined. These are ideal qualities for job candidates. Fitch has had great success hiring graduates from the StreetWise program.
StreetWise reminds us that talent is distributed equally while opportunity is not. Volunteering with StreetWise is a rewarding way to progress towards equal opportunity.
StreetWise Partners has a variety of volunteer opportunities available in New York and Washington D.C., including our Mentorship program, Mock Interview Day, and Speed Networking. We’d love to have you as part of our community! Sign up to learn more today.