Building a comprehensive mentoring academy for schools of health

J Clin Transl Sci. 2019 Aug 28;3(5):211-217. doi: 10.1017/cts.2019.406. eCollection 2019 Oct.


Formal mentoring programs are increasingly recognized as critical for faculty career development. We describe a mentoring academy (MA) developed for faculty across tracks (i.e., researchers, clinicians, educators) within a "school of health" encompassing schools of medicine and nursing. The program is anchored dually in a clinical and translational science center and a school of health. The structure includes the involvement of departmental and center mentoring directors to achieve widespread uptake and oversight. A fundamental resource provided by the MA includes providing workshops to enhance mentoring skills. Initiatives for junior faculty emphasize establishing and maintaining strong mentoring relationships and implementing individual development plans (IDPs) for career planning. We present self-report data on competency improvement from mentor workshops and data on resources and barriers identified by junior faculty (n = 222) in their IDPs. Mentors reported statistically significantly improved mentoring competency after workshop participation. Junior faculty most frequently identified mentors (61%) and collaborators (23%) as resources for goal attainment. Top barriers included insufficient time and time-management issues (57%), funding limitations (18%), work-life balance issues (18%), including inadequate time for self-care and career development activities. Our MA can serve as a model and roadmap for providing resources to faculty across traditional tracks within medical schools.

Keywords: Workforce development; dissemination and implementation; goal setting; individual development plans; mentor training.