The success of the MICRO internships relies heavily on the success of the mentor-mentee interactions in the program. MICRO program mentors consist of graduate students, post-docs, research scientists, and faculty who guide the program participants in their research. The experience of these research mentors varies greatly, especially when it comes to mentoring in a virtual environment. Therefore, we provide our mentors with a set of resources aimed to support them in four main competencies in research mentoring: (1) Defining a research project and aligning expectations, (2) Planning and managing remote research tasks, (3) Effective and inclusive communication in a remote setup, and (4) Fostering independence. The interactive and methodical approach presented in this training is designed to help mentors develop skills for engaging in a productive, culturally-responsive relationship with their mentees. Each section includes worksheets and additional material to guide the mentors in putting into practice the competencies learned.
Desired Learning Outcomes
By the end of this training, mentors will be able to:
- Articulate expectations for the research project based on shared goals.
- Define the undergraduate research project in terms of manageable scope, the relevant milestones, and the means to measure progress.
- Structure remote undergraduate mentoring and implement tools for information and data sharing.
- Provide critical feedback in a constructive and inclusive way to the mentee to assist them in reaching their full research potential.
- Foster mentee independence through the development of a network of mentors that they can reach out to for guidance and help on relevant questions.
- Access relevant resources for support and guidance for mentoring issues.
Training will synthesize material from the following references:
- Entering Mentoring, Christine Pfund, Janet Branchaw, and Jo Handelsman, W. H. Freeman, First Edition: 2015. ISBN: 9781464184901.
- Mentoring resources, courtesy of Lourdes Alemán and Benjamin Hansberry at MIT Teaching + Learning Lab, as well as the Teaching Development Fellowship Program.
- Mentor Resources, MIT UROP Office
- Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do, Claude M Steele, 2010. ISBN: 9780393062496.
Additional worksheets and personalized exercises will be provided for each topic.
Note that these trainings occur periodically across the semester.