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What does "mentoring" mean?

The word mentoring has its origins in Greek mythology. It says that Odysseus asked his friend Mentor to take care and support his son Telemachos while being absent.

These days mentoring is defined as a self-organized, hierachically independent relationship between an experienced person (mentor) and a less experienced person (mentee).

You can find more information on the website of the Forum Mentoring - Federal Association For Mentoring in Science.


Goal
Mentoring aims at supporting the mentee's career. In the 90s mentoring was established as a successful tool for a systematic human resource development.

In the academic context, mentoring is often used to support gender equality. Women are still under-represented in science-related leadership positions. Therefore, the Dorothea Schlözer mentoring program only adresses women. Mentoring starts at an informal level and helps building career networks.

The University of Göttingen also offers two other mentoring programs aiming at supporting young reseachers into the private sector (KaWirMento) and science management (WeWiMento).