The PGR mentoring programme was launched in 2020 in recognition of the the unique position and contribution that postgraduate research students (PGRs) make to the research culture at York Here's what some of the participants have said about the experience:
- 92% of mentees and 92% of mentors said that they would recommend the scheme. 94% of mentees said mentoring had added value to their PhD experience
- Mentees most commonly wanted and found support with thesis writing and career development (84%) and building relationships, networking and collaborations (65%) and communicating research (46%) and found that this kind of impartial support complemented the support from their PhD supervisor.
The application, matching and review process for the pilot scheme have been designed to support the specific needs of PGR students. The scheme is designed to complement (not replace) the supervisory relationship by providing an opportunity for PGRs to discuss and develop their skills, behaviours and approaches to the research experience with a more experienced postdoctoral researcher.
Examples of the types of issues and goals mentees may want to explore are:
- Thesis writing
- Communicating research (eg. through publications and public engagement)
- How to support and enhance the learning experience of others (eg. as a graduate teaching assistant, tutor)
- Citizenship (eg. through outreach, widening participation, buddying, mentoring, being a student or civic ambassador)
- Developing and demonstrating leadership (representation on committees, project and conference organisation, peer led initiatives such as PhD survival)
- Career planning and development
- Increasing self-confidence
- Achieving work/life balance
- Increasing self-awareness and confidence