Posts Tagged ‘professional development’

University Mentoring

March 20, 2012

I subscribe to an e-mail newsletter from The Chronicle of Higher Education.  This morning’s posts contained two articles concerning mentoring.

In the first article, “An Australian University Boosts Retention With Mentoring”, the university now has a student-led mentoring program after research found that 95% of the students who dropped out before graduation had not talked with anyone.  As a result of the mentoring program, an estimated 300 students are prevented from dropping out each year, saving approximately $3.2 million (US) in tuition.  It makes me wonder about what we are doing here in the US.  President Obama has made increased college graduation rates a priority.  Everyone thinks it is going to cost more money.  Has anyone thought of using a personal approach as part of the solution?

The second article, “Midcareer Mentoring, Part I” explores the need for career guidance for tenured faculty.  It seems that mentoring programs for those new to the profession are common, but those who have several years of experience face complications within their professional lives such as research, publishing, required service work, administration positions, and exploration of other positions at other institutions.  Usually, there is no one to confide in or to turn to for advice.  Why is that, and how can mentoring programs help these professionals who are areas of influence continue to reach their full potential?  (I guess I’ll have to watch for Part II.)

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Facebook’s COO

February 6, 2012

A New York Times article this last weekend, entitled, “The $1.6 Billion Woman, Staying on Message”, featured Sheryl K Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer at Facebook.  The article points out that Sheryl, who is positioned to become a billionaire with the upcoming Facebook IPO, takes every opportunity she can to encourage women to enter and promote themselves in business and technology.  I’ve viewed some of her presentations on YouTube.  Sheryl is a dynamic speaker and an advocate for mentoring.  She herself has been mentored as she climbed various corporate ladders, and she actively mentors other young women in their careers.  However, her real message is more than mentoring.  Sheryl is a strong a role model for women who want to put business strategy and personal goals to work for themselves.  Mentoring is one of the tools to assist in that process.

National Mentoring Month

January 30, 2012

President Obama declared January to be National Mentoring Month.  As a result, mentoring has been highlighted in many ways throughout the month.  I especially appreciated hearing personal success stories from several mentors and mentees during the month.  But, hey, January is almost over!  (How did that happen?)  Mentoring goes on all year – not just in January!  Mentors will continue to share their knowledge and experience to guide and coach others; while mentees will continue to seek out individuals who can contribute to their personal and professional development.  If you’re not in a mentoring relationship now, feel free to contact me to find out how you can get involved as a mentor or mentee – or both.  Don’t wait until next January.  The amount of time and effort is small, but the rewards are great!