Mentor Spotlight: Microsoft’s Douglas Lepar shares his insight with Scholars

By Veronica Craker

WSOS mentors play a crucial role in the success of Opportunity Scholars. success. These individuals help Scholars identify career goals, connect them with professionals in their field and offer guidance through their own experiences.

Microsoft Director of Operations Program Management Douglas Lepar heard about WSOS’ mentorship program Skills that Shine from a colleague who volunteered for the program and suggested Douglas might be a good fit for their mentee, who was interested in a tech career.

As a first-generation college student, Lepar knew how it felt to navigate the complex college system. And with his 15 years of experience in the workforce, he was able to offer his mentees some guidance as they completed their career paths.

“I’ve been so impressed and humbled by the [students] I have seen who, thanks to this incredible program, have managed to juggle all those things while still thriving, growing, and engaging,” Lepar said.

The success of WSOS is reflected in the scholarships our Scholars receive and the professional development support provided to Scholars to excel post-graduation. Mentors are crucial in helping guide and enhance Scholars’ career readiness skills, ensuring a smooth transition from college to career. Volunteering as a mentor can significantly impact a Scholar’s life to help them succeed when they graduate.

Since its inception, WSOS has matched more than 9,000 scholars with mentors. We have repeatedly heard from Scholars that their mentors provided emotional support and encouragement to reach their goals. Through mentorship, Scholars gain valuable professional development experiences ranging from informational interview practice, resume and cover letter review, and choosing their own adventure to discuss finances.

Mentors like Lepar are a valuable resource who can help Scholars achieve their goals.