Teaching Mentorship Program

The purpose of the program is to assist novice or early-career teachers in navigating faculty life through developing a relationship with a more experienced faculty member, or mentor, from another institution. The mentors and mentees with work together to allow benefit for both participants.

The SRCD Teaching Committee was developed in cooperation with the Student & Early Career Council (SECC).

The mentor will serve as a resource for teaching ideas and feedback and a guide for managing interactions with students, other faculty, and administrators. The scholar will bring his or her fresh energy and ideas to the relationship as well, allowing reciprocal benefit for both mentor and scholar.

Program Guidelines

The deadline for the Teaching Mentorship Program has passed (December 13, 2019).

Who can be a Mentor?  

  • Any SRCD member with tenure or 7 years of experience in an academic position or in a non-tenure track position.
  • Members must be willing to commit to mentoring for 1.5 years and follow program expectations.

Who can be a Mentee?

  • Any SRCD graduate student member or early career member in their first 5 years post-Ph.D., or any SRCD member with limited prior teaching experience, who has current teaching assignments
  • Preference to be given to those individuals who expect to be on the job market in the next 2 years, currently on the job market, or currently teaching in a junior faculty capacity

How are mentor and mentee matched? 
Both fill out a short application. The Teaching Committee will match each mentee with a mentor, and send contact information to each person via email.

What is the length of formal commitment? 
1.5 years, starting from the date of pairing (pairs can agree to extend if mutually agreeable)

What are the expectations of mentors and mentees? 
The minimum expectations are as follows:

  1. Introductory 1-hour phone or video conversation (or in-person meeting, if possible) to introduce selves and to identify the specific questions or issues to focus on for the year.
  2. Periodic email exchanges. Video conferencing or phone calls throughout the winter/spring /fall with a minimum of one contact per month.  However, conversations should take place as often as needed in order to sustain the relationship and assist the mentee in strengthening his or her teaching.  Feedback on teaching observations (video-recorded or in-person as possible) is also encouraged.
  3. Reflection: in-depth conversation of about 1-hour at the end of the mentee’s first year to review progress and make plans for the remaining 6 months of the mentoring relationship.
  4. Closing conversation of about 1-hour at the end of the 1.5 year commitment.
  5. Program participants will fill out program evaluation form after the 1.5-year commitment has been reached as well as any follow-up evaluations that are conducted.

What other guidelines should mentors and mentees follow?

  • Mentor and mentee agree to honor confidentiality of all information exchanged.
  • Mentors and mentees are invited to share information and resources reciprocally—including such things as syllabi, course materials, ideas for class activities, videotaped lectures, etc.
  • Mentor agrees NOT to serve as a tenure or promotion evaluator of mentee.

For more information regarding the program, please contact Jennifer Zosh at jzosh@psu.edu.
If you experience any issues or have questions regarding the application form, please contact scholar@srcd.org.