Return to Work Mentoring Program

Von Vanessa Zeilfelder, 06. März 2024

A mentoring program for women in their mid-life stage, who plan to return back to work after a longer break. During nine months, the participants are supported and guided by Dow employees who volunteer as mentors. The Loopings team will accompany the program.

Be part of the second round!

Are you planning to return back to work soon? Join us and participate in the program as a mentee. Applications are accepted until Thursday, 11th of April 2024. Further details in the program roadmap below.

In Spring 2022, we initially launched the program, together with the chemical company Dow, based in Horgen, and the Career Relaunch Team at the University of St. Gallen. Nine months later, the first round of the Return to Work Mentoring Program came to an end.

After receiving very positive feedback from the participants, both mentees and mentors, we have the pleasure to continue the program in 2024. Learn more about the program below and apply to be a mentee by Thursday, 11th of April 2024. We're looking forward to hearing from you!

Key benefits for mentees

  • Mentors serve as additional sparring partners on mentees' journeys to return back to work.

  • Mentees get the opportunity to discuss their ideas, plans and potential uncertainties with someone outside of their existing network to gain new perspectives and benefit from their mentor’s professional and personal experiences.

  • Mentees expand their network, one of the most important success factors in today’s working world.

Mentee profile

  • Woman living in the greater Zurich area – Bern, Basel, Luzern, Zug and St. Gallen also count.

  • Finding themselves in their middle years after taking a longer career break, e.g. due to personal obligations.

  • Planning to return back to work within the next couple of months or year.

  • Convinced that they would benefit from having a mentor as an additional sparring partner by their side.

Important information

  • Participation in the program is free of charge.

  • Experienced Dow employees based in Horgen, with interesting career paths, serve as mentors.

  • Official program language is English (events, materials), since a lot of mentors have international backgrounds. However, it is up to the mentoring tandems to decide in which language they want to communicate. If you feel more comfortable communicating in German, just let us know.

  • The program is sponsored by Dow’s local community engagement. Therefore, it is targeted towards women in the greater Zurich area.

  • Loopings will guide and support throughout the mentoring process and share their experiences with and knowledge about non-linear careers and return to work.

  • Disclaimer: Participation in the program does not imply job prospects at Dow.

Program Roadmap

Applications are accepted until Thursday, 11th of April 2024. Send an email to including the following information:

  • CV incl. language skills

  • A few sentences about your motivation (max. 1 page): 1. Why do you want to participate in the program? 2. In which phase of your return to work journey do you currently find yourself in? 3. Where do you want to be in a year from now? 4. What do you look for in a mentor?

Matching of mentees and Dow mentors and assigning tandems until end of April 2024

Introductions between mentor and mentee during a short intro-call or meeting

Kick-off event on Tuesday, 14th of May 2024, with all participants. Onsite at Dow offices in Horgen, duration approx. 2 hours in the afternoon

Mentoring phase during nine months with around six meetings between mentors and mentees (in person or virtually)

Closing event in February 2025

Evaluation of the program based on anonymous survey conducted before and after the program

Who is joining forces for this program?

Loopings is a project by non-profit foundation Neustarter-Stiftung. With the platform, it supports people from midlife onwards in shaping their professional future in a self-determined and creative way. Loopings links companies and organizations and inspires them to develop future working, learning and career models.

At Dow, we work to become the most innovative, customer-centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company in the world.

How participants of the first round described the value of the program

Impressions of the first round

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