Mentoring is a voluntary, intensive relationship in which a mentor empowers a protege in an intentional manner.
Statement of Purpose
Prior to your first meeting with a mentee, create a statement of purpose that discusses why the mentor and mentee are entering a mentoring relationship. During your first meeting, discuss this statement of purpose and make sure it aligns for both of you.
Goals or Outcomes
Prior to your first meeting, jot down what goals or outcomes you would like to accomplish as a mentor. Also jot down what goals our outcomes you would like the mentee to accomplish. During your first meeting work with your mentee to clarify those goals or outcomes each of you hopes to gain from the mentorship. These goals don’t need to be perfect by the end of the first meeting. They can change or become more defined as the relationship unfolds.
During your first meeting, determine the frequency in which you will meet and how you will communicate in between meetings. Be sure to add the meeting dates and times to your calendar.
Schedule Time to Have Fun
As a mentor, not only is it important to guide your mentee on their professional goals but it is also important to build a relationship with them. Take some time to get to know your mentee. If your mentee isn’t from your area, suggest meeting at a local spot for one of your meetings. If you are both into sports, suggest going to see a game together. Just be sure your mentee is comfortable with any environments you suggest.
- Teaching Beyond the Podium podcast (Center for Teaching Excellence, University of Florida): Graduate Online Mentoring | Transcript (.pdf)
- Anne Rolfe (2016): Do I Need a Mentor or a Coach? (.pdf)
- Jeff Johnston (Vanderbilt University): Mentoring Graduate Students
- University of Michigan: How to Get the Mentoring You Want: A Guide for Graduate Students
- International Mentoring Association: Frequently Asked Questions
- National Center for Women & Information Technology: Evaluating a Mentoring Program
- Hanover Research (2014). Faculty Mentoring Models and Effective Practices (.pdf)
- Matt Fifolt & Linda Searby (2010). Preparing Proteges for STEM Professions
- Linda Searby (2014). The Protege Mentoring Mindset: A Framework for Consideration