CORAL GABLES, Fla. (January 28, 2015) – A new leadership and mentoring program aimed at helping undergraduate students and early-career professionals to flourish in their academic and career endeavors is being launched by the University of Miami Women’s Commission and SEEDS (Scientists and Engineers Expanding Diversity and Success).
“It Takes a Mentor” will match students and junior faculty and staff members with senior University professors, researchers, and staff, with the goal of forging relationships that enhance the former group’s personal, academic, and career development.
The UM Women’s Commission and SEEDS are encouraging senior faculty and staff members to volunteer as mentors in the initiative.
“Having a mentor is a vital component of success for undergraduate students and early-career professionals both within the university setting and after they have moved on to the next stage of their careers,” said Catherine L. Newell, assistant professor of religious studies, who, along with Jennifer Spangenberg, assistant director in Housing and Residence Life, received a SEEDS You Choose Leadership Award that made the new initiative possible. The College of Arts and Sciences is also sponsoring the new “It Takes a Mentor” program.
Spangenberg noted a recent Gallup-Purdue University study that polled more than 30,000 college graduates on their university experience and how they were affected by it. Among the findings: 22 percent of the graduates who indicated they had a faculty mentor were three times more likely to report they were “thriving” in both their career and personal life, and twice as likely to have found a career in which they felt “engaged by their work.”
“We believe facilitating these connections to a mentor is a vital step towards success,” said Spangenberg. “With this in mind, students, their mentors, and all members of the UM community are invited to participate in three leadership seminars—Leadership and Strengths, Reflection on U, and the Power of Networking—throughout the spring semester and to continue their mentor/mentee relationships long into the future.”
All students searching for a mentor and all faculty and staff who feel they have the energy and knowledge to share with students or junior faculty/staff are encouraged to apply. Applications for mentors can be found here, while applications for those seeking a mentor can be found here.
Applications are due no later than Friday, February 6.