Engineers Need Mentors Too!

Sayward Touton, Cory McDonald, Amy Monte, Gretchen Hein
2004 Annual Conference Proceedings   unpublished
The Graduate, Undergraduate Initiative for Development and Enhancement (GUIDE) program at Michigan Technological University (MTU) is a unique scholarship program that couples underrepresented students with mentors for their first year in engineering. The goal of GUIDE is to stimulate academic success through the example set by each mentor. Each first year student, or mentee, is mentored by a second year undergraduate student and a graduate student. By structuring the groups in this manner, the
more » ... n this manner, the mentee receives advice from two different perspectives and experiences. Having just completed their first year of college, the undergraduate mentor can better relate to, and therefore offer advice to typical first year concerns, such as how to approach a professor and where to go to get tutored in a specific subject. The graduate students are participating in the Peace Corps Master's International program in Civil and Environmental Engineering. These students typically have diverse interests and are service motivated. The graduate student mentor is also the team leader and guides both students based on his/her own college experience. Both mentors encourage good study habits, involvement in a professional engineering society, and career planning. Each group is required to meet at least twice a week to ensure that everyone is participating and to discuss issues of concern. Usually, the meetings are not all business. They are generally time to socialize and have fun together, because social interaction is important in developing relationships and gaining trust within the group. Some team activities have been: volunteering at the humane society, hiking to a local waterfall, and cooking dinner together. This paper will discuss the benefits of being a GUIDE scholar as well as the motivation necessary to ensure a successful first year experience in engineering. away from them excited". Only one person stated he/she did not find the seminars to be applicable, but offered no suggestions how to make improvements.
doi:10.18260/1-2--12899 fatcat:nfjcxwxb6vch7ak2u2chjvz65q