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Importance of Mentoring

From career guidance to insights about navigating the Stony Brook culture, mentors serve an invaluable role in your success. In addition to gaining an available confidant, mentors can increase your personal satisfaction and provide assistance in preparing for career advancement and future leadership roles. In fact, you may want to consider having more than one mentor, as it is beneficial in bringing diverse perspectives and advice.

The keys to a successful mentoring relationship include:

  • Mutual respect and understanding
  • Meeting on a regular schedule
  • Establishing clear goals and expectations
  • Measuring outcomes
  • Keeping discussions confidential — with no feedback being given to supervisors or department chairs

Mentoring Guidelines

  1. The Provost’s office requests from each school/college a list of mentors (advanced Associate and Full Professors). The list is compiled by the department/academic unit.
  2. Each junior faculty is assigned one mentor from the department/academic unit and one mentor from a relevant field of scholarship outside the department/academic unit.
  3. Each mentors/mentee group is expected to meet at least twice / year. The mentors serve both as ‘advisors’ and advocates of the mentee.
  4. The mentors/evaluators provide an annual short written report (written by the departmental mentor) to the department chair/academic unit head, emphasizing achievements, work in progress, teaching and service responsibilities, professional development opportunities, as well as challenges that the mentee has faced/identified over the year; the report is to be presented and discussed at a meeting of senior faculty members.
  5. The department chair/academic unit head meets annually with each junior faculty member to discuss the mentoring report and senior faculty feedback, and assesses whether the mentoring team is effective, or whether the composition should be re-evaluated.
  6. Affirmation of the mentors’ team and annual mentoring should be included in the 3-year re-appointment paperwork.
  7. For newly promoted Associate professors mentoring as above is also critical, probably for 2 -3 years post tenure decision.
  8. Mentoring activities to be considered in the promotion evaluation from Associate to Full (under the Service section).
  9. Mentors to be acknowledged through a mentoring award, college/school and/or university-wide, with or without monetary compensation (under consideration).
  10. The Dean or Associate Dean of each school/college functions as an additional resource of mentoring for the faculty
  11. Junior faculty are notified of their responsibilities in this relationship during orientation.