The One-to-One Faculty Mentoring Program is a collaborative initiative withthe Office of the Dean of the Faculty and the Office of the Dean of Biology & Medicine, which provides a formal mechanism for a new tenure-track faculty member to receive advice and counsel from a tenured faculty mentor from within the same division but outside her or his own department. Cross-departmental matches allow the tenure-track faculty to communicate with advisors who are not directly involved in their tenure review process. The program helps tenure-track faculty establish advisory relationships that will foster a path to career success without potential conflicts of interest. Mentors assist junior faculty members by providing information about University policies, culture, and resources as well as strategies for resolving work-related conflicts, setting and attaining career goals, and balancing work/life commitments.
This initiative complements existing guidance committee or departmental mentor programs. Having a circle of advisors promotes collaborative relationships that foster professional development at different stages of an academic career. We recommended that tenure-track faculty members seek career advice from their department chairs as well faculty who are familiar with their particular area of scholarship, both on campus and at other institutions.
ADVANCE developed the this initiative in response to Brown University tenure-track faculty members’ responses to a 2006 Collaborative on Academic Careers in Higher Education (COACHE) Survey. This survey captured tenure-track faculty members’ understandings of tenure and promotion practices and policies, satisfaction with research and teaching opportunities, and experiences of campus culture and collegiality. Survey results revealed that tenure-track faculty at Brown University are among the most satisfied overall from universities surveyed, however both female and male tenure-track faculty members desired more formal and informal mentoring opportunities.