AWIS-ND STEMentorship


A program that connects graduate women in STEM with undergraduate women in STEM to provide support for the undergraduate women throughout their academic and professional experiences.

Last Updated: 04/2017


What are the Upcoming Events?


Spring Social

RSVP: Click HERE to RSVP
Location: Jordan Hall Reading Room
Date and Time: April 25th 6-8pm
Please join us for a dessert social and closing event. Mentors/mentees who achieved the goal of meeting once per month throughout the program will receive program certificates (cut-off date for meetings is March 31st).

Final Testimonies
Even if you are not interested in speaking at the final event, we would love to hear your stories. If you are willing to share a testimony about the program (can be anonymous), please fill out this form.


What is STEMentorship?


Women with science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers earn on average 30% more than those with non-STEM careers. Consequently, the gender wage gap is significantly smaller in STEM fields. However, currently women represent only a quarter of the STEM workforce. This complex issue calls for mentoring relationships that support women throughout their academic and professional experiences.

Ethical Leaders in STEM (EL-STEM) is a program funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to provide Ph.D. students an opportunity to develop leadership strength and ethical decision-making skills while bringing positively impact to campus and the surrounding community. The STEMentorship Program is organized as a leadership practicum for EL-STEM to facilitate mentorship to female undergraduate students at the University of Notre Dame (UND). In this yearlong initiative, female students are paired with female graduate students based on individual career aspirations. With the support of the College of Science and the Association of Women in Science – Notre Dame chapter (AWIS-ND), the program will be a venue for these students to engage and explore career possibilities in STEM. For the 2015-2016 academic year, AWIS-ND was the most active graduate student group at UND, organizing 25 activities in partnership with 11 other graduate student and university groups. STEMentorship combines the leadership development and ethical foundation of EL-STEM with the dynamic network of AWIS-ND to create sustainable mentoring relationships. Mentors will guide their mentees through individualized professional development goals. Alongside one-on-one mentoring, the program consists of meet-and-greet, social activities, and career talks.


What are the Expectations as a Mentor?


Following are guidelines that will help you have a successful mentoring partnership.

  1. Initiate and maintain regular contact

    Mentors and students should commit to speaking a minimum of once per calendar month during the mentoring cycle (October 2016-May 2017). These connections may occur over email, phone, Skype, and/or in person when possible. At least one of these should be a face-to-face exchange. Mentors should take initiative in the relationship, contacting mentees regularly to set up meetings and find out if they need specific help.

  2. Set clear and realistic goals

    At the start of this mentoring partnership, mentors and students will have a conversation to define concrete goals and actively work toward accomplishing them.

  3. Individualize your mentorship

    • Be respectful and supportive of your mentee. Get to know your mentee on an individual basis.
    • Listen attentively to your mentee. Raise thought-provoking questions to help your mentee understand and articulate her motivations, accomplishments, weaknesses, etc.
    • Make observations or suggestions, and offer advice on goals and activities that might lead to rewarding professional development opportunities.
    • Share stories about how others made their way in the profession that might be relevant to the mentee.
    • Assist your mentee in finding resources and opportunities suitable to her research and/or career interests (ie. research assistant position, summer scholarship etc.)
    • Introduce and expose your mentee within your own professional circle and to circles outside the university community as relevant.
    • Recognize the work the mentee has done and the progress made.
    • Avoid making judgments or issuing evaluative statements.
    • Work out right away any minor concerns about the relationship.

  4. Be responsive

    Both mentors and students are expected to return calls and emails in a timely manner (ie. two business days) to each other and the program organizers.

  5. Be confidential

    Keep the content of discussions within the mentoring relationship confidential. All your exchanges with your mentee--both personal and professional--are subject to the expectations of professional confidentiality. Although this confidentiality is legally limited, neither of you should discuss the contents of your discussions with anyone else without the written permission of the other.

  6. Honor commitments

    Respect your mentee’s privacy and time commitments. If a mentoring conversation must be cancelled, it is expected that you will do your best to communicate in advance of the meeting and reschedule.

  7. Evaluate the mentorship

    Mentors are committed to complete bi-annual program surveys at the end of Fall 2016 and at the end of Spring 2017.

    Contact the program organizers for any needed changes.


What are the Expectations as a Mentee?


Following are guidelines that will help you have a successful mentoring partnership.

  1. Maintain Regular Contact

    Mentors and students should commit to speaking a minimum of once per calendar month during the mentoring cycle (October 2016-May 2017). These connections may occur over email, phone, Skype, and/or in person when possible. At least one of these should be a face-to-face exchange.

  2. Set clear and realistic goals

    At the start of this mentoring partnership, mentors and students will have a conversation to define concrete goals and actively work toward accomplishing them.

  3. Take advantage of your mentoring relationship

    • Be respectful and courteous to your mentor. Get to know your mentor on an individual basis.
    • Share your career plans and goals with the mentor, and recount your initiatives for professional development.
    • Actively seek for your mentor’s observations and feedback.
    • Reflect on the mentor’s observations.
    • Inform the mentor about the results of various efforts.
    • Refrain from asking your mentor for evaluative advice; rather, take advantage of the mentor’s suggestions about resources for feedback and objective evaluation.

  4. Be responsive

    Both mentors and students are expected to return calls and emails in a timely manner (ie. two business days) to each other and the program organizers.

  5. Be confidential

    Keep the content of discussions within the mentoring relationship confidential. All exchanges with your mentor--both personal and professional--are subject to the expectations of professional confidentiality. Although this confidentiality is legally limited, you should discuss the contents of your discussions with anyone else without the written permission of your mentor.

  6. Honor commitments

    Respect your mentor’s privacy and time commitments. If a mentoring conversation must be cancelled, it is expected that you will do your best to communicate in advance of the meeting and reschedule.

  7. Evaluate the mentorship

    Mentees are committed to complete bi-annual program surveys at the end of Fall 2016 and at the end of Spring 2017.

    Contact the program organizers for any needed changes.


How do I Apply?


STEMentorship runs each academic year, so thank you to all the mentors and mentees who signed up for the 2016-2017 academic year! We'll start again September 2017!

If you are interested in participating next academic year (2017-2018), please fill out the form below as a mentor or mentee.

Click Here to apply as a mentor.

Click Here to apply as a mentee.


Meet the Organizers


Triet Nguyen-Beck
Triet is a fourth-year graduate student in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Notre Dame, and a NSF Graduate Research Fellow in Chemical Theory. She is a participant of EL-STEM 2016-2017, and will organize STEMentorship as her leadership practicum.

Sivaranjani Seetharaman
Siva is a third-year graduate student in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Notre Dame. She is a Schlumberger Foundation Faculty for the Future Fellow (2015-present) and a Zonta International Amelia Earhart fellow (2015-16). She is also a leadership fellow in the 2016-17 Notre Dame Ethical Leaders in STEM program, and will organize STEMentorship as her leadership practicum.

Hope Pearson
Hope is a second-year graduate student in the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at Notre Dame, and 2016-2017 Outreach chair of AWIS-ND.

Abby Cao
Abby is a second-year graduate student in Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Notre Dame, and 2016-2017 Professional Development chair of AWIS-ND. She will help with STEMentorship and will also provide assistance in professional development related events.


Sponsors


Thank you to the amazing support from the Graduate School, College of Science, College of Engineering, and the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.