What It Actually Takes to Mentor Over a Million Women and Girls in STEM

by STEMconnector


Go #BeyondTheBuzzword: Share what mentoring over a million women and girls in STEM actually looks like using #MWMentorIRL!

Million Women Mentors (MWM) will gather again this year at our annual Summit & Awards Gala in DC in October to celebrate some pretty significant milestones: over 2.3 million commitments to mentor and over 1 million completed mentor relationships have been made as a result of MWM! These achievements could never have been accomplished without the collaborative work of 4 Governors, 13 Lt. Governors, local networks in 46 states, 60+ corporate sponsors, and 1600+ partner organizations. MWM and its partners do this work because we strongly believe that the practice of mentoring is one of the most important tools in advancing women and girls in STEM fields and careers.

While we celebrate the numbers of MWM’s achievements at this year’s Summit, we also want to go #BeyondTheBuzzword, and show what mentoring actually looks like in the real world in order to inspire even more to join this movement. And that’s where you come in!

Throughout the month of October, we’re asking you to share your mentoring stories, tips, and advice on social media by answering the questions down below and/or submitting your mentoring stories with our partners at MENTOR to help show want mentoring is all about! We also invite larger organizations to participate by encouraging their followers to join in on the #MWMentorIRL campaign.

Here are some posting tips to help us amplify the message:

  1. Jump on social media and include any or all of the following hash-tags in your posts: #MWMentorIRL, #BeyondTheBuzzword, #MentorIRL
  2. Help put a face to mentoring by sharing pictures of you and your mentor/mentee and recording video responses sharing your mentoring story or answering the questions down below
  3. In addition to social media, you can also submit your mentoring stories on MENTOR’s Mentor In Real Life website tool here: https://www.mentoring.org/in-real-life/. Make sure to include Million Women Mentors in the organization name field.

Answer any or all of the following questions to help others get started in mentoring, (or encourage your followers to join in and answer):

  1. How did you and your mentor/mentee meet? What tips can you provide for finding the right mentor/mentee and starting a mentor relationship?
  2. Maintaining a new relationship can be tough. How and where do you and your mentor/mentee meet and interact, and what is your advice for maintaining a strong mentor relationship?
  3. Did you ever have a set-back in your mentor relationship, and what did you learn from that mistake?
  4. What led you to become a mentor a mentee (give us an origin story!)?
  5. We’re all aware of the obstacles women in STEM fields face. How has a mentoring relationship encouraged you to stick it out and advance in STEM education or careers?
  6. How has your mentoring relationship helped get you through a tough professional or personal situation in your career?
  7. Who was an early mentor to you that helped get you where you are today? And how has that experience helped you be a mentor now?
  8. Share a story about how mentoring contributed to where you are today or how you’ve seen your own mentee grow
  9. What are some things that are often overlooked that helped make mentor relationships great? Share any pro-tips, insights, and lessons learned that will help encourage others to mentor!=

We hope this campaign helps shed a light on what actually goes into making a great mentor relationship. If you’re not already a mentor or are seeking to gain a new one, we highly encourage you to sign up with Million Women Mentors here: http://www.millionwomenmentors.org!

#MentorIRL also begins STEMconnector’s new #BeyondTheBuzzword social media campaign, where we will dissect, de-mystify, and demonstrate what the numerous and often confusing trendy buzzwords and acronyms within STEM really look like in the real world. Eventually, we  hope to even tackle the ultimate buzzword of STEM itself!