“I think about mentoring as a life-course process. So once I sign on as your mentor, I’m your mentor for life, and I like to be there with you to see you through the various phases of your career and the various phases of your life.”
“We make a lot of assumptions about people knowing some of the really basic things about being in graduate school and using the resources that are available to you. Some people really know that when they come to graduate school because of the kind of undergraduate education they’ve had, but a lot of people don’t really know that. So it’s really important not to assume that everybody already knows all of the things you have to do.”
“Even though people think mentors are experts and they know everything, that’s not the case. Mentors should be able to learn from mentees as well. They might learn about new topics, new ways of doing things, new ways of mentoring. So they should be open and very flexible.”
"For me, the most important aspect of mentoring have to do with really treating the students and trainees as scientific peers, which they genuinely are. … I think it’s very important for students to be involved in all aspects of the research process."
“The teachers who have made the most difference in my life treated me as an intellectual peer. … It’s really empowering to be treated that way as the student. And as an instructor … I’ve always been surprised at the unique ideas that come out of those discussions that I lead when I treat students as peers.”
“What I really like to see in a student is someone who has developed a passion for their program of research. Anybody can publish if you are persistent enough … but it’s a special person who really has a passion for what they are doing. … When I see that passion, then half the battle is won.”
You may already know that The Graduate School sponsors two career exploration series—the Academic Job Search Series and the Careers Beyond Academia Series-- that alternate every other year. But what if you miss one of these valuable events?
“I would say that the Ph.D. is absolutely a versatile degree. Don’t be afraid to pursue careers that are outside your research background. I encourage you to get creative and look for a career in an area you are passionate about, not just one that is in line with your thesis work.”