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Becoming an MAA Early Career Mathematician Mentor

Time Commitment

The most important part of the mentor/advisee relationship is regular contact to keep communication channels open. Even a short message from time to time or a timely response to an important question could make a big difference in the early professional life of a mathematician. The guidelines used by the AWM Mentor Network recommend a contact frequency (however brief) of 2-4 times per month, typically requiring no more than 15-30 minutes a week. Don't worry if semester pressures keep you or your mentee from communicating during busy times. Setting a goal of regular contact is the important thing. The official mentoring period lasts for one year, but obviously informal communication can continue indefinitely.

Suggestions for Mentors

  • Introduce (perhaps by email) your mentee to other professionals with expertise in areas that are of interest to your mentee. (In other words, help your mentee create a professional network.)
  • Share information with your mentee about your own personal and professional path.
  • Share perspectives of the type, "If I knew then what I know now."
  • Suggest websites or other resources that mentees may find interesting or useful.
  • Be prepared to answer questions related to tenure, promotion, work/life balance, job searches, and finding one's way in the professional community. These are very common issues among early career mathematicians.
  • If your mentee is close by, you could meet and chat over coffee or have lunch together at a section meeting.

Application Information

To apply to be in our database of mentors to be matched, please complete this form by August 1. If you have difficulties with the form, please send email to Audrey Malagon, ([email protected]), Virginia Wesleyan College, to see about applying by email.