The Physical Sciences Undergraduate Mentoring Program (PSUM) is an initiative by the School of Physical Sciences to help undergraduate students succeed professionally and academically. Students have the opportunity to meet professionals who will expose them to the many career paths and industries available in the Physical Sciences. PSUM runs annually from October through May, but the relationships that are built often last much, much longer. All Physical Sciences alumni are welcome to join the program as mentors. We also welcome friends of the School and local professionals in the Physical Sciences fields who are interested in coaching our students. All Physical Sciences junior and senior undergrads are encouraged to participate in our program. Students must complete an application and reference strong motivation for participating in the program.
Mentors can sign-up for the program by completing their online profile. After the mentors have registered, eligible students will review the mentor's online profiles to determine their preferred mentors -- or mentors that best suit their career and personal needs. After a mentor and student are paired, each will be notified of who their mentor or student is. Students are expected to send an introductory email to their mentors. The duo will have their opportunity to meet and discuss expectations at the PSUM Meet and Greet.
Students will attend a Mandatory Orientation and the Mentor/Mentee Interviews prior to the PSUM Meet and Greet. Mentors and students will then be encouraged to set-up meetings on a regular basis, and are encouraged to complete the Mentor Agreement Form. Various events will also take place throughout the year, which mentors and students are welcome to attend.
- Apply online (click on the link to the Student Sign Up) during the application period and list your top 3 preferred mentors.
- Attend a mandatory orientation and the Mentor/Mentee interviews. NOTE: To guarantee a space in the program, you need to attend orientation.
- The program coordinator will match you with a mentor, and email you his/her contact info.
- Send an introductory email to your mentor.
- Attend PS Mentor Program Events and stay in touch with your mentor on a regular basis.*
- Complete an online mentor profile.
- Attend the Mentor/Mentee interviews to meet with the students participating in the program and select your preference. Mentors have the opportunity to mentor more than one student.
- Expect an email from your matched student(s).
- Attend PS Mentor Program Events and stay in touch with your mentee(s) on a regular basis.*
*Remote mentors, or mentors who cannot be physically present at events, are welcome to the program as long as they maintain regular contact with student through telephone or online platforms.
The Matching Process
Once students and mentors have completed online profiles, students will attend a mandatory orientation. Directly following the orientation, students and mentors will participate in the Mentor/Mentee interviews where students get the opportunity to meet with at least 3 mentors of their choosing and speak with them about their career field and experiences. There will be three 15 minute interviews which will give the students and mentors a chance to meet and at the end choose their mentor/mentee preferences for the upcoming year. The program coordinator will do their best on accommodating their preferences and match students with one of his/her preferred mentor selections. The program coordinator will then contact students and provide them with their new mentor's contact information. Students are expected to contact their mentors through an introductory email. Mentors and students have the opportunity to meet during the PSUM Meet and Greet.
The Mentoring Process
A Physical Sciences Mentor is a guide, friend and resource who shares education and professional experience to help pave the way for students to succeed professionally and academically. For mentoring to be successful, both parties must work at developing a relationship and should remain open-minded, respectful and abide by the expectations they have set. Each duo has the flexibility to set their own expectations regarding meetings, communication, goals, etc. We strongly encourage participants to attend the three Mentor Program Events hosted by the School of Physical Sciences: PSUM Meet and Greet, PSUM Career Panels, PSUM Year-End Social.