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What is Mentoring?

Mentoring is a professional relationship in which the mentor assists the mentee in developing specific skills and knowledge that will enhance his or her professional and personal growth. A mentoring relationship can help students make the transition from the academic environment to the working world. Mentoring is the age-old tradition of the older generation sharing expertise and wisdom to help prepare the younger generation for the world ahead.

Mentors provide mentees with knowledge, advice, counsel support and opportunities in the development of mentees careers and professional lives. Mentors share their knowledge skills and talents with their mentees. They address character development and assist the mentees with professional growth.

Expectations of Mentee:

The outcome of your mentoring relationship depends on how much effort you put into it. As the mentee, you should expect to facilitate the mentoring relationship by initiating meeting times and discuss topics that are meaningful to you. Do not expect your mentor to have every single trait, skill, and characteristic that you are seeking. It is important that you respect your mentor's schedule and follow through on your meeting times.

Benefits of Being a Mentee:

There are many benefits to being in a mentoring program. Here are a few:

1. Encouragement and support from mentor
2. Increase confidence when entering the workforce
3. Opportunity to gain advice on how to balance work and other responsibilities
4. Focus on career plans and different career paths
5. Guidance on resume writing, interviews, and networking
6. Meet someone who can help you make career decisions, work through decision making, and meet new people in your field

The Roles of Mentors and Mentees:

The mentee will...

  • Initiate and be responsible for maintaining contact with his/her mentor
  • Guides conversations by providing relevant and meaningful topics
  • Maintains professionalism
  • Takes an active role in working with his/her mentor
  • Looks for opportunities to grow and develop by asking for feedback and reflecting on conversations

The mentor will...

  • Listen to the needs and expectations of the mentee
  • Offer suggestions and give clear feedback
  • Encourage and challenge the mentee to explore new ideas
  • Provide insight into making informed and ethical decisions
  • Offer real-life perspective and insight into the world outside of the classroom
  • Develop realistic and attainable goals