Membership & Fellowship: Setting the Foundation for Success through the District VI Mentorship Program
The District VI Mentorship Program continues to evolve during the third round of matching mentors with mentees. The Mentorship Committee has been working hard to continue development and expansion into other districts. ACOG President Thomas Gellhaus, MD, identified mentorship as one of his administration’s initiatives and intends to promote it nationally.
Why Is Mentorship Important?
It has been proven in both corporate and academic worlds that mentorship plays a vital role in the success of an organization. In addition to being the traditional way medical education has been taught for centuries, it also plays an integral role in dealing with characteristics and challenges unique to our profession. Mentorship can help with feelings of professional isolation, burnout, and depression. It is a time-tested way by which talents, principles, and philosophies of patient care are passed from more experienced mentors to less experienced, often younger mentees.
How Can I Get Involved?
The program platform offers two ways to get involved. First, you can participate in mentorship events at the district and national level. Several districts have already had Mentor-Mentee mix and mingles at their Annual District Meetings. Mentorship was highlighted at the 2016 Congressional Leadership Conference with a series of educational discussions. Mentorship will also become a focus at the ACOG Annual Clinical and Scientific Meeting in future years.
The second way to connect is by enrolling in a one-on-one relationship. Once a member decides to become a mentee or mentor, sign-up is easily done through the ACOG website: http://www.acog.org/mentorshipprogram.
The process takes about five minutes and consists of filling out a template requesting demographic, preferences, and contact information from the mentor or mentee. Once received, a mentorship match will then be made with a mentee who has a similar template profile.
How Long is the Program?
The program fosters an initial 12-month long relationship, but encourages those partnerships to expand beyond the initial year. It is important to have a goal-setting meeting at the beginning to determine what you would like to work towards. Also, it is important to set expectations and communication preferences at the beginning. The relationship is only as great as what you put into it.
Reach out to your district officers and ask about the program, or email ACOG staff member Kelsey Dashiell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Watch the mentoring video.