International Mentoring: Profile of a Mentor

2IsoldeMatthiasLearn how the RREF Mentoring scheme works internationally from one of its international mentors, Matthias Schraeder.

The RREF Mentoring Programme was set up in 2008 with the aim to offer as many undergraduates and postgraduates as possible the opportunity to have a one to one connection with a real estate professional in the industry to better prepare them for employment.

In recent years RREF has called for International Mentors, to enable us to take the next step in providing international students with the opportunity to form a connection with a mentor from their home country through the RREF International E-Mentoring Programme.

We recently talked to one of our International Mentors, Matthias Schräeder, an Associate with Cushman & Wakefield in Frankfurt, to find out why he got involved with the programme, the importance of mentoring and how he makes his international partnership with current MSc student Isolde Braun work.

What interested you in the RREF International E-Mentoring Programme?
I believe that the programme is a great platform to share experience, coach and facilitate the job entry for students. Additionally it is an opportunity to stay in touch with the University and get to know its latest developments.

How do you make this international partnership work?
We have the big advantage that Isolde’s family lives around Frankfurt so it was easy for us to meet-up when she went home to visit her family. Further I could combine the RREF Mentoring Reception with a business trip to London. Besides that we stayed in touch via e-mail and telephone.

Did the RREF Mentoring Reception provide you and Isolde a great opportunity to meet in person?
Absolutely! It was a very good reason for me to come to London and an easy way for us both to meet in person, especially being able to meet other mentors from London. Introducing them to Isolde and being able do a bit of networking of my own with the vast number of Alumni, made it definitely worth going.

What sort of advice are you asked for by your Mentee?
Since Isolde already has/had a job we did not work on the typical application bits and procedures, but rather I shared my industry experience and the knowledge about different job-types in property, i.e. from Asset Manager to Valuer. I believe that it is the biggest challenge for students to get a feeling for what different job roles mean in daily-life, i.e. what are the advantages/disadvantages in working for a fund or a servicer for example.

What sort of impact do you think you have on a student mentee?
I think that due to the sharing of knowledge and experience students get more comfort in making their own career-related decisions. As a mentor I can give advice and provide help in difficult circumstances and therewith lead to better informed decision-making of the students. I hopefully can answer questions that their fellow students cannot and which they would not ask their future employers.

If you live or work outside the UK and can offer some time to support 2 or more international students at Reading from October 2015 onwards, or would like further information on the programme, please contact us on  


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