Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Holy Cross Football : Playing to Win Off the Field

To: 277 Loyal Crusaders collectively defined as the 2013 '90-Wide' Mentoring Program 
Regarding: Rollout of the next iteration of the '90-Wide' Mentoring

I believe I speak for many on this distribution in stating that there are few personal passions and pursuits that bring greater satisfaction than witnessing the love that many Crusaders have for each other and the college. We see strong evidence of this in the avid participation and support of the Holy Cross Gridiron Leadership Council's '90-Wide' Mentoring Program

(Please see the attached file for pairings and contact info. I would hope the file is self-explanatory. For those not familiar with this program or the file, for example, when freshman Kenny Acquah opens the file and sees that he is paired with Casey Gough, he can scroll down and find Casey's contact info and scroll across to see that Casey is rocking it as an FX/Emerging Markets salesman at Morgan Stanley. They can reach out to each other. Kenny can arrange an office visit over break, and . . . the rest as they say is "magic". Please open the file and find your name. Most relationships and pairings remain the same but the current freshman are now involved and some other relationships/pairings are new as well. Thanks LD)   

If you are on this distribution, you are one of the 277 proud and loyal Crusaders that make the '90-Wide', Holy Cross Football, and the College of the Holy Cross truly great.      

You hail from 29 states and 1 Canadian province. You cover a territory from Bow, New Hampshire to Miami, Florida to San Diego, California, to Beaverton, Oregon and many, many points in between. 

You graduated from the Cross from as far back as 1948 and projected to in 2016. That is a full 68 years for those who are more linguists than math scholars. 

You have achieved real professional distinction across 25 separate industries. 

What do I believe is your greatest distinction? You care. 

The fact that you are on this distribution shows just that. Your caring for each other whether as a mentor or a mentee is a trait that has immeasurable value. What does "caring" really mean and how do we define it? I welcome sharing comments from two of you when asked what this program means. I think they speak for many of the great Crusaders who both give and receive the greatest gift of selfless dedication. A current Crusader writes:    

"In today’s economy, having a mentor who can advocate for you professionally as you try to gain your first internship or full-time job is invaluable. Usually mentors can set you up with a field of contacts that will lay the foundation for your future professional network. 

But having a mentor is about more than just gaining employment.  It is about having a supportive adviser—someone who has gone through the same program and academic rigors as you and is now successful in their chosen field.  It serves as a reminder for us current players that great things do happen to the guys that go through the Holy Cross Football program and that our hard work pays off down the road.

By connecting current players to the HC tradition, and by giving ex-players a chance to relive college football through the life of a current player—everybody wins. I think the '90-Wide' is a fantastic program that should and will continue to foster and grow. 

I know of no other comparable school that has a program like this and it is one of the many reasons I am proud to be a Crusader."
Another individual who is now serving as a mentor himself shares his personal experience and writes:   

What '90-Wide' has meant to me.

Coming out of college I had a questionable resume, minimal interview experience and even less "real" job experience. As a football player I found it easy to procrastinate a professional future, as football consumed our lives for all but maybe 2 months a year (December/January). From the fall season, to winter recruiting/weights, to spring ball, and summer training - football is/was consuming.

I learned that getting some of the premiere summer internships as a Holy Cross undergrad was extremely difficult, even with a stellar resume (which I did not have anyway). However, I have also learned (since leaving Holy Cross) that the ability to leverage the Holy Cross network can often times outweigh your resume, lack of job experience, and/or non-target school strikes given to HC students.

After graduating from Holy Cross with a degree in Sociology and a minor in football, I joined an Insurance company in New York, essentially cold calling lists of people to interest them in Life Insurance.

After 2 months with minimal success, I came to 2 conclusions. First, I would never make it as an insurance broker. Second, the only marginal success came from cold calling (slightly warmer) Holy Cross alums, who are spread around the Tri-State area in every job sector. I decided that in order to get a plan in place for my future, I would meet as many of these HC alums as possible to see how they found their way post- HC.

I spoke to CEO's, bankers, doctors, coaches, teachers, etc and almost all of them had a similar starting point : another Holy Cross alum either directly or indirectly had a hand in their professional development.

I managed to latch on with a former football player class of 1984 who not only provided me other contacts to reach out to, but eventually hired me to work for him which is where I still reside over 3 years later.

Although long winded, the purpose behind my story is that the '90-Wide" Mentoring program now gives current students the ability to establish a network of former HC graduates and build a professional foundation while still an undergraduate.

I would have greatly benefited from this program as a student which is why I was honored to join as a mentor. This program gives current students direct lines into successful Holy Cross alums for invaluable professional guidance and opens countless doors that might otherwise be closed.

In an ultra competitive job market, establishing a network as an undergrad is an absolute must. I have personally witnessed countless examples of the age-old saying "It's not what you know, but who you know." Getting the opportunity to leverage successful Holy Cross graduates is a fantastic start.

On these notes, I strongly encourage both those mentoring and those receiving the wisdom from their mentors to be proactive in reaching out to each other. 

I hope the many very recent grads listed on this file but not paired with a current Crusader can use it to advance your own professional careers.

To our current Crusaders, I would hope you would want to share this message and file with your parents, family, and friends so that they too know how great it is to be part of the Holy Cross Football family.   

I would ask everybody on the distribution to save at least the file if not the message as well. 

I am very proud to count so many of you as friends. I thank you for your friendship and support knowing full well that after having read this message almost all of you will think, "Wow, it truly is great to care and to be a Crusader!!" 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Let's Play to Win in 2013 and beyond!!

LD '83

HCGLC Mission: Committed to excellence in helping Holy Cross Football win on and off the field. 

Questions, comments, feedback, please do not hesitate to ask or write. (lwdoyle128@aol.com)

We are trying to make this the best program in the nation. That is how we define "excellence."  

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