Want to be a Mentor?

Interested in being a SMART mentor? Read more about what the SMART program offers students and complete a research mentor commitment form by Jan. 11, 2019. Be sure to indicate whether you can fund a student or if you request the SMART program to fund a student. We will try out best to find a good match depending on research interests and funding.

Before the Program Begins

Once matched, review the participant's application to become familiar with the student's background, experience, abilities and interests.

Before the program begins:

  • Communicate with the student to recommend reading.
  • Plan a project that is suitable for the participant and of benefit to your lab's goals. Provide the participant with a written outline of the project.
  • Make sure members of your lab understand the participant is to be treated as a colleague, as a part of the scientific community.

During the SMART Program

Once the SMART program session begins: 

  • Meet with the student early in the summer to discuss the project and your lab environment. Make your requirements known to the student.
  • Discuss the student's goals and how his/her efforts this summer can move him/her closer toward those goals.
  • Maintain a sufficient level of contact with the student and supervisor to monitor the student's progress. Let the student know how he/she is progressing.
  • Provide advice for further career development. Share your personal experiences with the student.
  • Provide the program director with feedback regarding the student's performance. Advise the program director of any significant problems that arise in time to take action to solve the problem.

A good mentor can help a mentee understand the system and facilitate career advancements. Here are a few additional reasons why mentors matter, and what being a mentor means.

  • A mentor can contribute to, but is not responsible for, the success of the mentee.
  • Mentors can relate to mentees from completely different backgrounds.
  • A mentor can encourage someone to make appropriate choices and develop plans for succeeding. Building self-confidence is important to career development.
  • A mentor can help a mentee gain opportunities for development.
  • Your mentee is not you. Every person is unique and can be helped to develop individual talents, sometimes exceeding everyone's expectations.