How an Industry Mentor Can Kick-Start Your Career

mentorship program griffith stem
griffith industry mentor

Meet Griffith University Master of Environment Engineering & Pollution Control graduate Sadaqat Abbas. Hailing from Pakistan, Sadaqat previously studied a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering and moved to Brisbane to complete his master’s degree at Griffith.

In addition to his degree he took part in Griffith’s award-winning Industry Mentoring Program, which connects our students with a global network of industry professionals for career development, confidence building and industry networking. As part of the program, Sadaqat had the chance to engage with his mentors in-person or online, while tracking his growth and progress through the Industry Mentoring Platform. He shares his experiences below.

Joining the mentorship program

I was about to finish my master’s degree and was considering how to land my first job, being quite unfamiliar with the Australian job market. It was difficult to network while studying my master’s degree, then I discovered the Griffith Industry Mentoring Program through the Careers and Employment Service.

This was my first time as a mentee in any mentoring program and I was able to participate in it twice. I had been living in Australia for almost three years and thought it would be a perfect platform to gain more industry perspective and exposure to the job market, particularly in the water sector.

Being paired with a mentor

For my first mentorship experience I was paired with Mohammed Hayat, the Trade Waste Officer at Logan City Council. Having an interest in the water industry, I had the opportunity to visit all the wastewater treatment plants and waste recycling facilities in Logan which gave me exposure to field work and get the chance to ask burning questions I had for engineers and operators in the industry. It also helped me to extend my professional network, something that’s extremely important in the field of engineering.

“Being paired with my mentor gave me a vision of what I could be doing in the future and gave me greater knowledge of the Australian job market; it was an eye-opening experience.”

Mohammed is an extremely giving person and he opened my mind in terms of career growth and development. He also polished my skills in selling myself in the market and made me aware about the challenges and opportunities for the beginning of my career. Being paired with him gave me a vision of what I could be doing in the future and changed my outlook on gave me greater knowledge of the Australian job market; it was an eye-opening experience.

Round two – my second mentor

After the insightful experience I gained through my first mentoring program, I decided to sign up a second time. This time I was partnered with Alana Mosely, a Surface Water Engineer at Jacobs. Coming into the experience a second time I was more familiar with the mentoring process and knew which areas I wanted to work on. During our initial catch-up, I discussed what I wanted to achieve with Alana. We met once in a month, with Alana arranging for me to meet different engineering professionals to get more exposure and learn from their experience. She arranged quite a few meetings and it really helped me to expand my professional network and learn from their experiences. On the top of that, it helped me to build my confidence and increased my passion and determination to work in the water industry even more.

Alana always went the extra mile; she took time from her schedule to review my resume and cover letters and conducted mock interviews with me, all of which helped me in being shortlisted for jobs and boosted my confidence. I am so heartened to think that experienced engineers are willing to spend their valuable time on early-career professionals.

“This program completely broadened my perspective of the industry and helped me become a better version of myself.”

Beyond my career

Meeting with my mentors was not only about my career; we discussed work-life balance, how to become a better person, giving back to the community, mental health and much more. This program broadened my perspective of about the industry and helped me become a better version of myself.

In the end, I would like to thank the team behind the Griffith Industry Mentoring Program for providing such an engaging learning platform for students and mentors to further their skills and knowledge. I would encourage others to consider joining the industry mentoring program or to seek out other mentoring programs either through work or through Griffith’s Alumni Network; it can play a pivotal role in your career growth and development.

Life as a graduate

When I graduated from Griffith I did a 16 weeks internship with a water and wastewater consultancy. This led to me being offered a graduate role, where I worked as a Graduate Water and Wastewater Engineer for over a year. I am currently in position to apply for Permanent Residency in a month and am hoping to further my career in this industry in Australia.


Learn more about Master of Environment Engineering & Pollution Control on the Griffith University website.

You don't have permission to register