Mentors, Mentors Everywhere: Weaving Informal and Formal Mentoring into a Robust Chemical Sciences Mentoring Quilt

Originally delivered Mar 31, 2021
  • Type:
    Archived Webinar
  • Level:
  • Duration:
    1.25 hours
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The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a paradigm shift in coordination and collaboration constructs associated with the creation of chemical technologies. A review of the important roles of mentoring in the chemical sciences is presented in the context of current challenges and opportunities for the profession.  The changing roles of mentoring as demonstrated by the range of programs from professional societies and institutions can be attributed to differing levels of access, technology and the recognition of mentoring excellence. 

Formal mentoring programs should empower the participants to be mentored to independence; when combined with informal mentoring practices the impact is even greater.  The author shares (and challenges the audience to also explore) what are considered “hidden mentoring figures” who have been present as informal mentors along the journey from pre-college to academic administration.  The ensuing informal, productive mentoring relationships often go unrecognized in the wider chemical sciences research community.    

The quest to equip chemical engineering protégés to develop and grow their own mentoring networks can be juxtaposed with formal mentoring networks in a manner that optimizes the use of resources (e.g., funding and talent) and the willingness of others to serve as mentors.   The development of strong mentoring networks comes full circle when those who are mentored become leaders in their own larger scale self-directed formal/informal mentoring networks. The chemical engineering community is uniquely positioned to impact the profession at all career levels; creating a robust post-pandemic path forward.


Christine Grant

Christine Grant is a Fellow, Life Member, and the 2022 President of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). She is a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at NC State University, where she has served as the inaugural Associate Dean of Faculty Advancement for 12 years. In this role, Grant was responsible for faculty development, promotion, and tenure in the College of Engineering at NC State.  

She received an Sc.B. in Chemical Engineering from Brown University. She also has an M.S. and a Ph.D., both in Chemical Engineering, from the Georgia Institute...Read more

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