U I C WISEST - Women in Science and Engineering System Transformation

Career-Span Mentoring

The Faculty Mentoring Program helps faculty learn how to get things done within the university and how to chart a productive research path-information that faculty have indicated they value highly.  The Office of the Provost and the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs sponsors the program in order to supplement the assistance and guidance that individual departments and colleges provide to their probationary faculty members. Mentoring across the career span provides faculty with the support they need to succeed, while helping UIC to retain more of the faculty it hires and improve morale and performance generally.  

If you are looking for a mentor or an opportunity to mentor, visit the Office of Academic Affairs website for more information about the Faculty Mentoring Program.

New and Mid-career Faculty

Since 1997, the Office of Faculty Affairs has helped match junior faculty requesting a mentor with senior faculty mentors who offer their time and experience.  Potential participants completed a short questionnaire about their research and interests, and are able to request a mentor within or outside of the home department.

In 2006, the Office of Faculty Affairs acted on faculty feedback that mentoring is needed at various stages of a faculty member's career by:

Underrepresented Faculty Mentoring Program

UIC's Underrepresented Faculty Mentoring Program (UFMP) is a faculty-driven initiative to address poor retention among African American tenure-track faculty. It was expanded in 2005 to include Latino/a tenure-track faculty, with funding support from the Office of the Provost. Latino/a and African American faculty from more than 28 departments have participated in the program, both as mentors and mentees, and they have described the experience as enormously helpful in both tangible and intangible ways.

While all faculty can benefit from mentoring and networking, those from underrepresented groups face unique challenges as they work to establish themselves as teachers, researchers and strong members of the university community. Such challenges have made it difficult for UIC to recruit and retain many excellent faculty members and to develop and maintain a faculty that is as diverse as the city around us. This is a loss for everyone-for students, faculty, staff and administrators, and for Chicago itself.

To learn more about the UFMP, please contact Laura Stempel, Ph.D., at lstempel@uic.edu.

Leadership Shadowing

The Administrative Shadow Program (ASP) was implemented as a pilot program in January 2000.  In its first year, ASP matched seven UIC emerging women leaders, who had been nominated by their deans or department heads, with top academic administrators for six months.  The seven women shadowed deans, chancellors, and provost level administrators.  It was expected that at the end of the six months, these women would have first-hand experience in the day-to-day activities and demands of managing complex academic institutions or units.  At the culmination of the program, all of the participants came together and shared their experience with the chancellor in attendance.  All agreed that ASP was both professionally and personally rewarding, and suggested making the program a year-long activity instead of six months.   Due to the significant administrative oversight required, the ASP has been temporarily put on hold.  The Chancellor's Committee on the Status of Women and ASP could serve as effective and innovative ways for the campus to be responsive in enhancing professional development for women at UIC at a time of budget stress.  

To learn more about the ASP, please contact Clara Awe, Ph.D., Ed.D. at awe@uic.edu.

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Women in Science and Engineering System Transformation (WISEST)

The goal of the WISEST Initiative is to increase the number, participation, and leadership status of women — majority and minority — in academic science and engineering through institutional transformation at UIC.