The academic success of faculty in the Department of Surgery is contingent upon faculty mentorship and sponsorship. Mentorship and sponsorship require a bi-directional relationship between mentor and mentee that inherently must build upon the unique talents and diversity of the faculty. The Department of Surgery has established a structured academic mentorship and sponsorship program with three working strategies to enhance mentorship and sponsorship in the Department of Surgery:
- A formal mentorship program for all faculty.
- Preparation of faculty to serve as mentors.
- Preparation of faculty to serve as mentees.
The intentional mentoring program consists of traditional mentorship strategies as well as new functional and dynamic mentoring partnerships. Traditional mentoring is based on “fit” or “chemistry” between partners, while functional mentoring is centered around particular expertise of the mentor for a mentee’s project and career goals.
We will establish “Mentoring Coordinators” within the Department of Surgery that facilitate all aspects of mentee-mentor relationships in a structured approach, individualized for unique faculty goals and barriers. This includes determining best practices for mentoring relationships and providing framework and resources for mentorship success.
Serving as a mentor is a major professional and personal commitment. Our goal is to incorporate success and excellence in mentorship into the mission and fabric of the Department of Surgery. We will prepare and support mid-level and senior faculty to promote an environment where mentoring is effective, valued and prioritized. We will implement a formal training strategy for all faculty mentors with the goal of improving mentoring competency among all faculty. We will formally prepare faculty to serve as effective mentors for dynamic and diverse early-career individuals, trainees, and students.
Mentees also have significant opportunity to enhance mentoring partnership in order to reach full potential and for professional advancement. There are known benefits of being “mentor and sponsor-ready” when aspiring for academic advancement. We will develop resources and establish a standard knowledge base for all junior faculty in the Department of Surgery to be mentor-ready.