From student mentoring to peer learning programs for academics – there are so many different ways that mentoring can support your university.
And the benefits of mentoring are vast. With applications for diversity and inclusion initiatives, supporting mental health and upskilling your people, there are so many reasons to start a university mentoring program.
To give you even more inspiration, we’ve put together a list of 5 top universities that understood the assignment. These institutions are thriving through mentoring and we’re here to tell you that you could too.
The important thing to bear in mind is that this is just the tip of the iceberg, there’s so much more out there. But in the spirit of highlighting some great programs, let’s get started!
How is mentoring used in academic environments?
Mentoring programs are highly beneficial additions to any academic institution, and for good reason – there are so many different ways to implement mentoring.
For instance, they have powerful benefits for inclusion. King’s College London is a shining example of this as they integrated peer mentoring into their institution in order to support BAME students.
This powerful level of support helps new BAME students to find resources, make the most of their courses, and get up to speed on university life. All while helping them to feel seen, heard and included.
Another advantage that mentoring can be used to create Alumni Groups. These support networks provide support to students in their post-university career progression. This is a highly valuable element in the ether of overwhelming professional decisions that we all face.
And the best part is, these efforts help your institution stand out in terms of support, and that can be terrific PR.
📖 We’ve covered how to implement mentoring in your university in more detail in this guide 📖
5 universities with fantastic mentoring programs
Let’s get stuck into 5 UK and US universities that are thriving through mentoring:
1. University of Cambridge
This world renowned university needs no introduction. And unsurprisingly its student mentoring program is top quality.
The program has a laser focus on mentee aspirations, and so is great if you’re a Cambridge student looking for that additional support and opportunities for learning. If you’re willing to take on the responsibility of mentoring, then you’ll see great benefits.
What’s more, it the university stresses the importance of picking the best mentor for your personal development needs, and has that a focus on holistic development.
2. University of Westminster: Future Ready Mentoring Program
Westminster University’s ‘future ready’ program pairs students up with an expert in order to develop their skills, gain insight into progressional future, and even has a focus on networking, which is a highly beneficial skill to learn at the beginning of their career.
Further to this, according to TechJury, the most fundamental disadvantage of online meetings is “poor networking opportunities”, as deciphered by 69% of scientists. Now that we are moving back into a (partially, but more than before) in-person professional sphere, it is important to land networking opportunities where we find them, and what better place to start than University?
3. University of Southampton: Career Mentoring Program
This program is geared more towards training students to become mentors, rather than being mentored. If you’re a career mentor, or a newly-qualified academic striving to become one, programs such as this are often the first step on your career ladder. Plus, it’s good to help students in areas where you have had similar struggles, such as career planning.
4. University of Washington
Now for the specialised areas! At the University of Washington, an undergraduate mentoring program is available to students studying Economics. This means that the course is a little more niche in terms of the direction that it gears you towards. But the program itself covers a huge number of areas from career development to interpersonal relationships in the workplace.
In fact, it even offers practical advice such as managing a healthy work-life balance, which is a highly stressed element of work today.
5. University of Florida: Multicultural Mentor Program
Finally, the University of Florida provides a Multicultural Mentor programme that offers monthly connections, ‘goal accountability’ (important for our development and finessing our career objectives), and general support. It’s advertised as a boost for first-year students to have a deeper relationship with the University as a whole.
Once again, this program works for students and aspiring (or seasoned) mentors alike, as it also offers the chance for career mentors to get onto the program and become a source of expertise at the Uni.
Overall, when implemented and used to the fullest advantage, mentoring programs can transform your university in the best of ways. Not only does it up the ante in terms of support levels, which we all need for our career paths (which can be complex and confusing after we have graduated) but also promotes inclusion, and provides great PR for your institution.
When you implement mentoring through a platform like ours, you can scale your program with ease. Connecting students and faculty around the world has never been easier. Book a demo today to find out more.