NEEDED: SURES Program - Near-Peer Mentoring

Dr. Swanson is currently recruiting graduate students and post-doctoral fellows to serve as near-peer mentors for our SURES (Summer Undergraduate Research Program in Environmental Health Sciences).

In this program, undergraduate students (rising juniors and above) will be engaged in research projects focused on different areas of environmental health sciences in the Colleges of Agriculture, Food and the Environment, Engineering, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy. In addition, the students will be involved in career-building and social activities through-out the summer (June -August). To enhance the guidance and support of the students, they will be paired with more experienced graduate students and post-doctoral fellows (near-peers).

To pair the mentees with their near-pear mentors, the mentees will select their top three mentors (based on their profiles) and will interact with these mentors during a speed mentor/mentee match session. The expectations of the near-peer mentor and additional information are provided below. Each mentor will receive a $500 stipend.

Expectations of Near-Peer Mentors:

1) The near peer-mentors will participate the following:
     • A 3-mentor training session
     • Mentor/Mentee match

2) Weekly interactions with their mentees (June 12-August 11)

  • A minimum of 3 Thursday activities
  • Poster session at the end of the program

3) Assessment of the program

Expected Time Commitment:

  • One-on-One Mentoring sessions with mentees        9 hours
  • Mentor Training Session (May 22, 23 or 24)             3 hours
  • Mentor/Mentee Match (June 5 or 6)                         2 hours
  • Poster Session (August 11, 3-5 pm)                         2 hours
  • Thursdays Activities*                                                ~4-6 hours each 

Total expected hours of service (minimum) ~25 hours

* Dr. Swanson is currently planning a range of activities that will be held on primarily on Thursdays. These may include a hiking trip to Red River Gorge, viewing and discussing a movie, two sessions with Rapper Farmer Brown to learn about incorporating rap music into outreach initiatives and a trip to the Fayette County Water treatment plant.

Why Peer Mentoring?
● A peer mentor can help students understand program expectations or policies.
● A peer mentor can answer the questions new students sometimes feel are too small or silly to ask a faculty member.

Why be a peer mentor?
● Peer mentors increase their own social and professional networks.
● Peer mentors gain some important professional development opportunities as they attend meetings or activities with their mentees.
● Peer mentors get the opportunity to develop mentoring skills that are essential in both academic and other careers.

Qualities of good peer mentors:
• Strong interpersonal skills
• Positive attitude
• Self-motivated
• Willing to spend time with mentee

To apply to become a near peer mentor, 

APPLICATIONS ARE NOW CLOSED

Any questions about the program should be addressed to Dr. Hollie Swanson