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Background to the CoM Mentorship Programme

The aim of the mentoring programme is to help mentees (i.e. PhD students, Post-Doctoral Students and early career faculty members) with their personal and professional development, so that they are able to reach their full potential as self-reliant, self-confident and independent scientific researchers. This will be achieved by forming a relationship with a mentor who can act as a sounding board to discuss issues related to the mentee’s career.

What is Mentoring?

  • Mentoring is a power-free relationship based on mutual respect, trust and confidentiality, and with the focus on promoting long-term personal, professional and career growth, development and maturity.
  • Mentoring is less about teaching, and more about asking, prompting and listening, while research supervision is more about telling, showing and teaching.
  • Each mentoring relationship is unique, as it is shaped by the mentor and mentee involved in the relationship.  Some of you may already know your mentor from your supervisory relationship, so may not need to work at creating your relationship.  However, the mentoring relationship differs from the supervisory relationships. This will be explained further during workshops that are being planned.

For an early career researcher to benefit from the mentoring process, three things need to happen:-

  1. They need a mentor who invests the time and commitment to help empower them so that they are able to move forward with their career development
  2. They need to make optimum use of the opportunity to learn from their mentor’s expertise and experience to help them become self-reliant, confident and independent researcher
  3. They need to respond to the distinct shift in the nature of the mentoring relationship; and work with their mentor to move along this continuum to independence.