In the fall of 1999 the Office of Professional Development (OPD) formally launched a Faculty Mentoring Program. In 2001-2002, the Mentoring Program was expanded to include all School of Dentistry faculty who desire to participate in the Program.
Mentoring relationships are an important part of enhancing that pursuit as recognized by The University of Texas-Houston Health Science Center Task Force on Mentoring (1997). As an outcome of the Task Force, recommendations were made that mentoring activities be given a higher priority at UT-Houston because of the positive aspects of mentoring that enhance and encourage professional growth. Those recommendations are: that department chairs are required either directly or indirectly to mentor junior faculty or ensure that junior faculty receive mentoring from other senior faculty. that all new faculty members be assigned a mentor. To support the efforts of School of Dentistry department chairs and administration, the OPD is collaborating with the chairs to facilitate a more formal approach to mentoring. We believe that mentoring is critical to encouraging faculty vitality.
To be considered as a part of the Mentoring Award Program and become eligible for the Outstanding Mentor of the Year Award mentors and mentees need to do the following. Mentors and mentees who are not participating in the ongoing formal Mentoring Program offered through the OPD need to submit a letter or use the attached form notifying the OPD that they are an active mentoring pair. The notification letter must include the name of the mentor and the mentee indicating that their mentoring relationship has existed for at least one year. The letter needs to be signed by both the mentor and the mentee. Based on that notification, they will be become part of the Mentoring Program and be eligible to participate in nomination of the Outstanding Mentor of the Year Award. After notification of the mentoring relationship, the mentor and mentee will be invited to participate in the formal mentoring activities sponsored by the OPD.