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Good Mentoring is Key to Grad Student Success

Participate in the GSAB Mentoring Program!

A&S Graduate Students can apply to be mentored by a member of the Graduate Studies Advisory Board. See below for application instructions. 

The A&S Graduate Center partners with our Graduate Studies Advisory Board to provide mentoring to grad students. We pair students with volunteers who are friends of W&M’s graduate programs. The goal of this program is to foster one-on-one mentorships intended to help students build professional skills. Graduate students are most successful when they receive mentoring from multiple sources. Your mentor will complement the mentoring you routinely receive from your faculty advisor.

If I want to apply to be paired with a GSAB mentor, what should I expect?

We will pair a student with a mentor for the academic year. We ask mentors to be in contact with you roughly three times per semester, although more frequent interactions are welcome. We hope you will discuss with your mentor your individual career and skills development goals. Your mentor can provide advice, guidance, and, where possible, resources to help you reach your individual professional goals. This might include mentoring in the following areas: building a professional presence online and promoting one’s career; the preparation of job application materials and job interview skills (e.g., mock interviews); networking, including providing networking opportunities or connections in your field; or offering guidance on particular job or field-related skills. It is up to you and your mentor to agree on how much time to spend working together. The Graduate Center will pair students with mentors, will make the initial introductions, and then will let you take it from there. The Grad Center is always available to assist, answer questions, or address concerns.

Why should I participate in this program?
  • Gain broader perspectives on how to prepare for your career;
  • Expand awareness of different career paths;
  • Receive guidance on job materials from experts with extensive experience in your field;
  • Expand your skill set;
  • Build your resume;
  • Make contacts in your field;
  • Get to know a really interesting person who cares deeply about W&M!
What is NOT expected of the mentor?
It is important that you have reasonable expectations about what to expect from your mentor. Mentors are NOT expected to:
  • Help you get a job.
  • Read substantial portions of your academic writing or help you with research.
  • Give you an unreasonable amount of their time.
  • Have all the answers. Each mentor brings individual strengths to the table; not every mentor will be able to address all of your questions or support you in all of your goals.
  • Do all the work. Like any relationship, this mentorship should be a give and take. If your mentor suggests you do something that will add to your professional skills and help you build your career, you should make a good effort to follow through.
How do I sign up?

Please fill out this brief application online to help us pair you with a alumni volunteer. Student applications are due Friday, October 6, 2023 by 5 p.m. (ET).

How will I be paired with a mentor?

Once you have filled out the application form and supplied information about areas in which you would like to receive mentoring, we will compare your responses to those of the volunteer mentors. We will make every effort to pair you with the mentor who will best suit your needs. We cannot guarantee that each student applicant will be paired with a mentor, but we will do our best.