Adapting Mentoring Programs to the Liberal Arts College Environment

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Book Chapter

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Mentoring Strategies to Facilitate the Advancement of Women Faculty






Recent work indicates that mentoring of both tenure-track and tenured STEM women faculty is important for their success. Surveys at Union and Skidmore Colleges have shown that faculty rising through the ranks agree that they need more information about the tenure and promotion process and that having a mentoring program is important to them. Because the development of mentoring networks is considered more beneficial than having a single mentor, the overall goal of our project is to provide faculty with a variety of mentors who can share their successes and challenges. At small institutions such as ours, drawing from the population of both colleges for mentors is advantageous. As a complement to the pre-existing mentoring programs on both campuses, we have developed a series of mentoring opportunities mainly for STEM women faculty, including speed mentoring, receptions, discussion tables, peer mentoring, and a mentoring database. STEM women have found the opportunity to exchange information on achievements and challenges, both personal and professional, to be empowering.