Mentoring and Support Groups

Introduction

The Centre for Academic Leadership offers mentoring as well as support groups.

  • Mentoring is a structured programme where experienced colleagues guide their mentees; we offer two types of mentoring: Individual Mentoring as well as Group Mentoring.
  • Support groups, facilitated by the Centre's manager, are groups of people with common experiences or concerns who come together to provide each other with encouragement and advice; we have multiple support groups: writing, new faculty members (1st year at uOttawa), women research chair holders, and pre-retirement, to many a few. If you would like to suggest a new support group, let us know.

Who is the mentoring programme for?

Whether you are a newly appointed tenure-track faculty member, associate or full professor, department chair or vice-dean, the Centre for Academic Leadership coordinates a Mentoring programme that creates a link between tenure-track or tenured University of Ottawa faculty members (the mentees) and more experienced colleagues (the mentors). Mentors provide support, information and advice, and also share experiences that can help faculty better negotiate the demands of a complex and constantly changing academic world.

Why use mentoring?

Many studies show that people who have a mentor benefit from a higher level of satisfaction, better work conditions, faster promotions, better work-life balance, and stay with the same institution for longer.

Moreover, data collected by the CAL from participants of the mentoring programme from 2008-2018 (n=170), regardless of gender or the programme they participated in (individual or group mentoring), not only do 93% of them say they are satisfied or very satisfied with the mentoring experience, but 94% agree that their mentor provided them with helpful feedback, that their mentor was a role model (81%) and a resource person with who they can discuss skills and plans (85%).

More specifically, respondents confirm that mentoring is a channel to discuss various problems related to work (87%); challenges related to professional or personal life (81%); career goals (77%); the skills needed they need to develop (86%); the steps for tenure and/or promotion (79%); and the impact of professional or personal activities on academic career (76%).

Mentees believe that their participation built their confidence in their skills (77%); gave them a better understanding of their professional role (75%) and the university (77%); helped them better identify their professional needs (82%); as well as enable them to plan their career better (78%). It is also worth noting that 70% of respondents overall agree that mentoring helped them with their stress level. 

 

Testimonials

  • "As a new prof, it's not easy to figure out what academic service options to volunteer for (given options). Thanks to my mentor I felt like I had a much better sense of what and how much service to seek out."
  • "Recently, it was my pleasure to write a warm thank-you note to my mentor for her help in writing my successful SSHRC proposal. I am sure that her guidance was critical to the success of my proposal. One of my tips for others going through this, especially for the first time, is to sign up for the mentorship program!"
  • « ... tout était très utile: excellents mentors, rythme approprié, durée des rencontres appropriée, grandeur des groupes appropriée, thèmes abordés utiles. Excellente expérience.»
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