The core of faculty mentoring at NIU is faculty-to-faculty mentoring. This involves pairing a junior faculty member with a senior faculty mentor from the junior member's tenure-granting department. We also provide and encourage other mentoring opportunities and activities.
We encourage faculty to have additional mentors outside of our program. The following mentoring opportunities have different emphases and serve different purposes:
Group mentoring at the college level: Mentors facilitate group discussions with junior faculty.
Mentoring in the discipline at the national level: Junior faculty find a mentor in their national discipline (a colleague they met at a national meeting or whose work they became familiar with during graduate study, for example).
Mentoring within gender/sexuality groups: Faculty seek mentoring from a colleague of the same gender/sexual orientation, especially while pursuing promotion and tenure.
Mentoring faculty of color: Mentoring of faculty of color is embedded in and influenced by departments, colleges and university climates. Faculty of color often seek out a mentor of their own racial and ethnic background who can better relate to feelings of isolation, marginalization and other issues experienced by many faculty of color.
We provide and encourage activities that bring faculty together to socialize, share information, meet with administrators and receive training:
Mentor orientation and training introduces senior faculty to the responsibilities and skills needed to have a positive impact on the career success of junior faculty.
Roundtable sessions with mentees/mentors elucidate various topics.
Guest speakers from NIU and other universities provide new perspectives and research on mentoring and/or specific areas of faculty development.
Webinars enhance the experience for both mentors and mentees.
Mentor/mentee lunches offer the opportunity to meet and socialize in a comfortable setting.
Mentor and Mentee Responsibilities
Mentors provide critical advice to their mentees. They help mentees become productive faculty members through efforts in research, teaching and service. Mentors help their mentees adjust to the university and support their career development and success.
Mentees identify specific goals for which they seek guidance and take the initiative in the mentoring relationship. They're committed to respecting meeting times and agendas to ensure productive discussions.