Selecting a Mentor
What is mentoring?
Mentoring is a reciprocal learning relationship in which mentor and mentee agree to a partnership where they will work collaboratively toward achievement of mutually defined goals that will develop a mentee's skills, abilities, knowledge, and/or thinking.
Choosing a Mentor
Fellows are required to work with a mentor of their choosing as part of the NLI. We recommend you follow these steps when making your selection:
- Establish specific goals. Think about what you want to achieve during the program and beyond and how a mentor can help you reach these goals.
- Identify successful professionals. Try to find someone that has achieved what you hope you might achieve and who meets our mentor qualities to consider and eligibility requirements below.
- Approach your proposed mentor. Inform them of the program requirements and the expectations for mentors, and ask if they are able to commit to mentoring you through this cohort year.
Qualities to Consider
We recommend you select a mentor who is not your immediate supervisor or director, and that you consider the following qualities as you identify potential mentors:
- has experience beyond your own and demonstrates effective leadership skills
- has the knowledge and expertise you need to achieve your goals
- is authentic, empathetic, creative, and honest
- listens well
- will encourage and support you as well as provide honest constructive feedback
- has sufficient time and interest to mentor you
- is accessible
- has a good network of influencers
- makes commitments and follows through
Mentor Eligibility Requirements
- be employed by a Maryland school of nursing or a Maryland health care service agency/practice
- have demonstrated leadership in their field
- be able to provide a yearlong commitment to applicant.
Expectations for Mentors
As you discuss the role with your prospective mentor, share the expectations below.
- guide their mentee through the yearlong program
- attend mentor learning sessions
- commit time to mentoring, making it a priority
- build a relationship with their mentee
- establish regular meetings with their mentee, e.g. twice a month, for at least 45 minutes
- be available by phone/email/text (within reason)
- facilitate their mentee’s learning
- actively listen and give feedback without judgment
- work through issues that arise through the year as well as in the mentor/mentee relationship
- evaluate the process
- learn about themselves.