UW McNair

Mentoring

We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. – Gwendolyn Brooks

Purpose

The goal of the McNair Program is to send motivated, talented, but educationally and economically disadvantaged students to graduate school. Our success depends on creatively finding remedies to their educational obstacles. In this endeavor, you as a faculty or graduate mentor play an essential role. The mentor relationship provides both the academic and the personal support necessary for your student to prepare for entry into and completion of a graduate program. You are in a unique position to provide invaluable information pertaining to the academic standards and expectations associated with graduate study and also to those associated with being a professor at a research university. The purpose of the mentor relationship is to expose McNair Scholars to the research process, to encourage them to pursue graduate studies, and to give them a model of what academic life and graduate level work are about.

Faculty Mentors

The mentor/student relationship should last for the duration of the McNair Scholar's research project, and preferably through the student's undergraduate years. During this time, we ask that the faculty mentor:

  • Meet with your student regularly
  • Provide your student with direction and academic guidance
  • Assist your student with research proposals, papers, and oral or poster presentations
  • Evaluate your student's research before it is submitted to the McNair office
  • Assist your student with selecting graduate programs suited to her/his academic interests and goals
  • Discuss admissions processes and the realities of graduate school with your student.

Graduate Mentors

The mentor/student relationship should last for a minimum of one year. During this time, we ask that the graduate mentor:

  • Meet with your student regularly
  • Provide academic guidance to your student
  • Assist your student with research proposals, papers, and oral or poster presentations
  • Introduce your student to faculty members, graduate students, and community contacts in his/her field of interest
  • Provide your student with information about graduate programs suited to his/her interests
  • Discuss graduate admissions processes and the realities of graduate school with your student.

Please get involved!

The close, intensive involvement in support of a student's academic and career pursuits is, without a doubt, one of the most fulfilling aspects of university life. All of us have had individuals in our lives that have made a difference. The mentor relationship is an opportunity to be such a person to a McNair Scholar. We encourage you to make the most of this opportunity, and you will find that it will be mutually rewarding and beneficial. Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light. -Albert Schweitzer