Mentoring Rights and Responsibilities
Peer mentors serve as coaches and facilitators, drawing on their own experience as students to help their peers discover, explore, and deepen their own knowledge and capabilities as active learners in academic specialties.
Mentees have the right to:
- expect their mentor to be knowledgeable in the field of study, while realizing that mentors are peers who supplement rather than supplant course resources, including instructor and T.A. office hours, course help sessions, class attendance, and homework.
- expect that the mentor will be professional, will show up on time, and will come ready to mentor.
- feel safe and comfortable with the mentor. All meetings should be held in public locations, not a private setting.
- decline to work with any mentor with whom they feel uncomfortable, after consultation with the appropriate Learning Center staff member.
- not be judged or made to feel inadequate.
- expect confidentiality, recognizing that mentors are part of the Learning Center team and may be expected to share some information with staff.
- receive a timely response to their requests, allowing for holidays, weekends, and breaks. When mentors are not currently on staff in a given subject area or class, mentees have the right to expect The Learning Center staff to be diligent and prompt in locating, recruiting, and training a suitable mentor, while recognizing that requests may take some time to fulfill or may not be fulfilled if qualified mentors in a given subject area cannot be located.
If the mentor has a scheduling change, it is his or her responsibility to contact their mentee(s) at least 24 hours ahead of the scheduled meeting time. In the case of emergency, the mentor should attend to the emergency first, and contact The Learning within a reasonable time frame.
Mentees are expected to:
- attend class regularly. Mentors complement and supplement rather than supplant course resources, including instructor and T.A. office hours, course help sessions, class attendance, and homework.
- be an active learner. Mentors are there to guide and assist mentees as they do the work.
- come prepared for their session – know what they have questions about, what is due for their next class, and what their objectives and goals are for the session. Preparation includes bringing appropriate materials (textbooks, notes, quizzes, or exams) to the session.
- be on time for mentoring sessions or, in the case of drop-in mentoring sessions, early enough to allow the mentor to answer their questions without having to stay past the session’s end time.
- to contact the mentor at least 24 hours ahead of time if they must miss a scheduled session due to unforeseen circumstances. In the case of emergency, they should attend to the emergency first, and contact The Learning Center within a reasonable time frame.
- supply feedback to The Learning Center concerning negative or positive experiences.
Mentors have the right to:
- be treated with respect.
- set their mentoring schedule to fit their academic and personal needs.
- receive sufficient training, support, and resources to do their job well.
- remind mentees that they can’t do their work for them.
- decline to work with any mentee with whom they feel uncomfortable, after consultation with the appropriate Learning Center staff member.
- refuse to do any work that is unethical or inappropriate.
Mentors are not expected to do a mentee’s homework, exam corrections, or to write or proofread a mentee’s paper. Instead, mentors should model how to do the work and empower mentees to do similar problems or find and correct errors in their own work.
Mentors are expected to:
- Be knowledgeable in the field of study. They are expected to consult the course syllabus or Learning Center staff to be sure that they are familiar with the current course material. Mentors are not expected to serve as substitute for the instructor or to know the answer to every question; however, they should be willing to consult texts or use other methods to try to help their mentees.
- show up on time and to be prepared for the session. Mentors should anticipate their own study needs when setting up their hours of work as a Learning Center mentor.
- conduct all meetings in public locations, not a private space.
- conduct themselves in a professional manner at all times, and to be respectful, patient, and attentive to their mentees’ needs.
- respect all mentees’ confidentiality, recognizing that as a member of the Learning Center team, they may share information with Learning Center staff as appropriate.
- provide feedback on their experiences, positive and negative, to Learning Center staff.
- be willing to step aside if the material goes beyond their mastery, and inform Learning Center staff.
- use The Learning Center’s data tracking system.
- regularly post and update their schedule, including dates and locations, so mentees will know when they are available.
If they must miss a scheduled session, they should notify the mentees and Learning Center staff at least 24 hours ahead of the scheduled meeting time. In the case of emergency, attend to the emergency first, and then contact The Learning Center at a responsible time.