Mentoring means on-going advice and support regarding your scholarship, teaching, and/or clinical activities.
Your offer letter will include the name of your mentor. You may change mentors, or add additional mentors, at a later date.
Your mentor should be reasonably available to meet with you on an ongoing basis.
A single mentor may lack expertise in certain areas. Ideally, there should be multiple resources in the department in the event that there are issues which you cannot discuss with your mentor. This can be particularly important in interdisciplinary fields.
It is your responsibility to ensure that mentoring takes place. You may wish to have an initial meeting with your mentor and discuss expectations for the mentoring relationship, including how often you should meet.
Topics you may cover with your mentor:
- Criteria for reappointment/promotion.
- Publication expectations within the particular field.
- Grant funding, its importance in the particular field, and potential sources for such funding.
- In the Medical Center Line, balance between research, clinical and teaching activities.
- Building a reputation in the field (e.g., conferences to attend, editorial boards, becoming known to the leaders of the field [these are the referees who will later write evaluation letters for the reappointment/promotion review])
- Strategies for managing time and balancing service.
- Importance of being proactive in managing one’s career (i.e., seeking help and information).
- Resources for additional guidance on teaching strategies (e.g., Center for Teaching and Learning).
- Any matters of concern.
- Guidance when you are going through life/family transitions that may affect productivity (opportunity to take leaves/tenure clock extensions).
If you are not receiving what you need from your mentor, you can ask for that mentor to provide what you need or change or add mentors as you decide. If you want guidance on choosing another mentor, possible sources are your chair, your division chief, senior faculty within your department, or one of the Associate Deans of Academic Affairs.