While mentorship models may differ within Departments, Schools and Programs, the core component is the identification of a mentor(s) for all junior faculty members within their the first academic or clinical appointment as well as an annual satisfaction review. The program implementation will be staged according to needs and resources.
In addition to the Individual (One-to-One mentoring), outlined below, the following may be developed to further support faculty in specific areas:
Individual (One-to-One mentoring)
A. Recruitment and Matching of Mentors (In most cases a single mentor will be chosen.)
- Identify and recruit faculty members who would like to serve as mentors
- Mentors will provide a short statement about their research/education/clinical expertise to be available to the overall program
- Mentee selects 2-3 names of potential mentors to consider (phone conversation or meeting) and rank order. (and both identify anyone with whom they would be unable to work)
- Consider gender, race in selection of mentor as appropriate.
- Assure mentor comfort with mentee before final decision.
B. Criteria for Mentors (Characteristics/Qualifications)
- Associate or Full Professor, Senior Instructor or clinical equivalent, possibly from a division/program other than that of the mentee;
- Interested in being a mentor;
- Not in a position to evaluate the mentee
- Must understand departmental and faculty organization, academic procedures and possible sources of external support;
- Willing to make time for this endeavour (minimum 2 meetings per year);
- Approachable, empathic, non-judgmental, and supportive.
- Able to provide appraisal and formative feedback;
- Able to promote best performance in mentee; and Able to advocate for mentee, as appropriate
C. Role of a Mentor (May differ among departments/schools/programs.)
1. Career advice
- Assist mentee in adapting to cultural norms of academic life
- Assist in focusing goals and timing of career development plans; ensure adherence to job description.
- Assist with development of short and long term action plans which are reviewed at each meeting
- Challenge mentee to accept new responsibilities within job description
- Aid in preparing for academic milestones such as promotion
- Advise on the assumptions, expectations and deliverables that are required for career success
- Advocate for time protection to achieve job description
- Advise on the balance of contributions in research/clinical practice/education/administration
- Provide information on Faculty/University programs in support of professional development in education, teaching, research, administration and clinical practice e.g. TAG
- Assist as required in interfacing with the academic and clinical bureaucracies
- Provide coaching, as needed.
- Enhancement of problem solving and leadership skills
- Appraise and provide formative feedback
- Review grant applications and manuscripts when requested
- Be a “haven” where frustrations, doubts, concerns can be voiced without fear of reprisal
- Discuss problematic professional relationships encountered by the mentee
- Provide advice on understanding and navigating an academic environment
3. Role Model
- Source of inspiration for the mentee
- Model of professional competence and behaviour
- Advisor for balancing personal and professional life
- Continued development of mentoring skills
4. Faculty Interactions
- Have fun and create an enjoyable relationship
- Introduce mentee to key institutional leaders in order to establish and maintain a productive network of colleagues and to promote exposure within the institution.