IUEM Faculty Functional Mentoring Program

Mentoring in academic medicine serves to fulfill two basic dimensions, (1) career advancement interventions and (2) psychosocial support.  The specific purpose of this functional mentoring program is to address only the first dimension by increasing the scholarship of our faculty.

Functional Mentroing Definition

In the functional mentoring model, the mentoring relationship has clearly defined objectives that lead to tangible results and measurable benefits.  The mentee selects a mentor who has specific skills or expertise to match the needs of the mentee for their project.  The mentor offers expertise for guidance on a defined project.  The effectiveness of mentoring and the impact of the mentoring program are measured by the work products (scholarship) resulting from the relationship.  Progress reports and completion of the project provide tangible metrics to evaluate the program’s success.  The skills acquisition and scholarship outcome enhances the participant’s career progression and ultimately the department/institution.   After the project is completed, the relationship may dissolve or continue to evolve into a more traditional mentoring relationship.   (Thorndyke 2008)

Mentoring for IUEM Faculty

Currently, there is no standard for faculty mentoring in the department of emergency medicine.  It has occurred either ad hoc , in association with a fellowship or master’s program, or in selective pockets when junior faculty join a specific EM division or work group, such as Toxicology, EMS, Residency Programs Directors, or Administration.

Results from the recent “Roadblocks to Faculty Scholarship” survey found that IUEM faculty are interested in scholarship, but have trouble starting and finishing scholarly projects.  Faculty report the most common barriers to both starting and finishing scholarly projects are a lack of mentorship and a lack of departmental resources.  These results highlight the need for a more structured approach to mentoring faculty at IUEM. 

Mentorship Workship

The EM Faculty Development Committee will host a “Foundations in Mentoring Workshop” on September 5, 2012.  The objectives of the workshop are to (1) introduce faculty to the mentor-mentee concept and relationships, (2) provide the framework for specific mentoring skills, and (3) roll out the functional mentoring program.  The workshop will host speakers and facilitators who have acquired expertise in mentoring faculty in academic medicine.  The goal is to instill enthusiasm for a collaborative mentoring community within the department of emergency medicine.

Functional Mentoring Program Participants

Project Review Panel 

  • Faculty/staff from IUEM will review mentee project proposals and identified mentors.  The panel will offer feedback on the proposal and if there is a more suited mentor.


  • Junior faculty < 5years and fellows are expected to participate; Additional faculty are welcome to volunteer.
  • Mentor selection:  The mentee will identify a mentor (s) from IUEM faculty, other departments, or other institutions.
  • Mentee’s commitments include: *
  1. Develop and undertake an individual project relevant to their professional responsibilities (clinical, education, research, service).
  2. Identify a mentor with specific skills or expertise that match aspects of the project which the mentee needs guidance.
  3. Submit the project and identified mentor to the Project Review Panel for review.
  4. Initiate and manage a new mentoring relationship.
  5. Identify the goals for the project, establish timelines, and schedule meetings.
  6. Set up meeting in person with mentor for one hour a month. 
  7. Prepare adequately for each meeting (with agenda).
  8. Record and follow up on suggestions from mentoring sessions.
  9. Submit progress reports as required.
  10. Speak candidly about project goals and maintaining confidentiality.
  11. Attend monthly EM department Research Meetings and give periodic updates on project.


  • Volunteer faculty from IUEM, other departments, or other institutions.
  • Update the IUEM faculty list with their areas of interest and expertise.  This list will be available to mentees in order to facilitate mentor selection.
  • Mentor’s commitments include:*
  1. Read and critique a draft of the mentee’s project proposal.
  2. Meet in person with mentee on regular basis (recommend one hour a month.)
  3. Provide expert guidance and assistance to the mentee in achieving milestones for their project.
  4. Provide ongoing review, critique, progress reports, and suggestions for the project.
  5. Listen to the mentees concern’s and keep the conversations confidential.
  6. Although career counseling and guidance outside the project are not formal expectations, it may occur.  Be available to help the mentee to think strategically about career goals and advancement.  (Offer to review the mentees IDP:  Individual Development Plan)                                                                                        

*(from BUMC website)

  • Awards/Incentives for Mentors:
    1. Recognition at Annual Faculty Meeting?
    2. Establish an “IUEM Mentoring Academy”?
    3. Establish an annual faculty mentoring award?
    4. Ask Chair about additional incentives


  • Mentee driven project with the oversight and direction of a mentor (s).
  • The outcome goal is a tangible scholarly project that has high potential for dissemination and impact.
  • A scholarly project is defined broadly and includes “a research study, a writing project, a way to improve the department or patient care, a better way to teach residents or students, or anything that would improve the department’s missions in research, service, or education.”
  • Examples: 
    1. Develop and implement a program (clinical practice, educational curriculum, service)
    2. Develop a research project (clinical practice, educational, administrative, faculty development, etc…)
    3. Publish an educational resource
    4. Develop and implement a clinical pathway or guideline
    5. Write and submit a grant proposal
    6. Develop an educational or clinical research project– write and submit abstract
    7. Create and present a poster presentation
    8. Develop an advocacy project
    9. Manuscript –write and submit a manuscript (including completion of stalled projects)
    10. Write a book chapter
    11. Write a review article or systematic review
    12. Organize and publish a quality initiative
    13. Publish a  case report
    14. Online publication (i.e. MedEd Portal, Merlot, online journal)

Timeline for Project and Evaluations 

Start:  September 5, 2012

  • IUEM Mentoring Workshop
  • Baseline mentoring evaluation (all at workshop and prospective mentees and mentors)
  • Pre-program mentee self-assessment evaluation
  • Workshop evaluation (all participants at workshop)

1 month:  October 2012

  • Submission of project proposal and selection of mentors

2 months:  Nov 2012

  • Review Panel offers feedback on project proposal and mentor selection

6 months:  March 2013

  • Progress report

9 months:   June 2013

  • Progress report
  • Mid-point mentoring evaluation (mentors and mentees)

12 months: September 2013

  • Progress report

15 months: December 2012

Finish @ 18 months:  March 2013

  • Post program self-assessment evaluation
  • End of program evaluation

Additional Resources for Faculty Development 

Faculty will be provided with online resources from the EM Website, including a list of mentors and their areas of interest and expertise.  Additionally, the IUSM OFAPD will roll out an online centralized mentoring resource which will provide a variety of mentoring tools and resources to enhance mentoring practices and the mentoring relationship.

Faculty will be expected to engage in self-directed faculty development.  Faculty will be provided with opportunities for faculty development through numerous programs offered internally and externally.  Below are some examples:

EM Programs:

  1. Scholarship & Academic Works (Mitchell)
  2. IUEM Academic Teaching Sessions
  3. EM Faculty Development Workshops



IUSM/ IUPUI Programs:

  1. Academy of Teaching Scholars Series
  2. FEED series
  3. LAMP
  4. CTL (Center for Teaching and Learning) lectures
  5. Gopen writing course
  6. IUSM Faculty Mentoring Website

External Programs:

  2. McMasters
  3. Navigating the Academic Waters
  4. AAMC courses

Outcome measures of the program

 Outcomes – Impact (change or benefits that result)

Short-term goals


Long-term Outcomes

Mentees obtain necessary information to shape and improve:

  • Skills acquisition (that lead to scholarship)
  • Behaviors  (that lead to scholarship)
  • Attitudes  (about scholarship and mentoring)
  • Abilities  “
  • Knowledge  “

Utilization of the program:

Do they participate?

Do they obtain skills?


Pre – Midpoint – Post


Increase Scholarly activity/ Scholarship

(contribute to dossier)


  • Individual Career Advancement and Academic Promotion
  • Individual capacity to be a mentor of the future
  • Sustainable mentoring structure
  • Departmental Reputation
  • Impact of functional mentoring projects

Faculty Vitality Survey (2011 vs 2013)

(examine how this changes over time with this content addition of mentoring program )

  • Vital Faculty Member:
  1. Satisfaction
  2. Engagement
  3. Productivity / Academic Promotion


  • Workshop evaluation
  • Mentee self-assessment evaluation
    1. Pre-program:  time 0 at workshop
    2. Post-program: 18 months
  • Mentoring program evaluation
    1. Baseline mentoring evaluation (all faculty at workshop including mentors and mentees): time 0
    2. Mid-point mentoring evaluation (mentors and mentees): 9 months
    3. End of program evaluation (mentors and mentees): 18 months

Mentoring FAQ

Effective mentoring is an important predictor of success in academic medicine.  IUEM will implement a Functional Mentoring program following the September 2012 retreat. To facilitate a satisfying and productive relationship please review the following FAQ.

What is Mentoring?

  • Symbiotic and dynamic relationship between two parties
  • Goals are to advance career and promote career satisfaction for both parties
  • A mentor can be a guide, teacher, advisor, coach, confidante
  • A mentor can be short term (e.g. completing a project) or long term (e.g. career mentor)
  • A mentee may benefit from a mosaic of mentoring:
    • mentor panel (multiple mentors of differing expertise)
    • peer mentors (similar level and experience)
    • functional mentor (selected for a specific project or skill need)
      • IUSM faculty will be participating in a Functional Mentoring program
  • A successful mentee often takes ownership of and directs the relationship

What is Functional Mentoring?

  • Functional mentoring pairs faculty mentees with more senior/experienced faculty mentors for a specific project.
  • The mentee selects a mentor who has specific skills or expertise to match the needs of the mentee for their project. 
  • The mentoring relationship leads to tangible results and a measurable benefit. 

How will I participate as a faculty member?

  • As a mentee, you will define your specific need and approach a selected faculty member for guidance. A list of faculty niches will be provided
  • As a mentor, you will keep your faculty niche information updated and, when approached, either provide the requested guidance or suggest another individual as appropriate. 

What are the benefits of this program?

  • Mentoring relationships are shown to improve career success and job satisfaction for both the mentor and the mentee. 
  • While increased scholarly productivity is a tangible reward, enhanced engagement, collaboration, and enthusiasm will benefit the collective faculty.    

How much time and energy will this take?

  • The functional mentoring program is planned for 24 months with periodic progress reports.
  • The time and energy devoted to functional mentoring will vary based upon individuals and upon projects.
  • The functional mentoring relationship concludes once the project is completed.  
  • A single individual is not encouraged to engage in more than 2 of these relationships simultaneously. 

What does a mentee look for in a mentor?

  • Approachable
  • Available and accessible
  • Professional integrity
  • Content expertise relevant to mentee interests and goals
  • Helps mentee develop agenda and goals
  • Provides opportunities for advancement and networking

What are qualities of successful mentees?

  • Participate actively in the process (e.g. set agenda, plan future meetings)
  • Have clear expectations and goals
  • Are honest and straightforward
  • Are receptive to feedback and new ideas
  • Follow through on items discussed
  • Show appreciation

What should you do as a mentee?

  • Consider what motivates you
  • Consider what type of work style you prefer and how much structure you need
  • Clarify what your needs and/or gaps are:
    • Personal (e.g. work life balance)
    • Professional development (e.g. networking, choosing a niche)
    • Skill development (e.g. time management, clinical skills)
    • Academic guidance (e.g. administrative skills, promotion)
    • Research (e.g. manuscript writing, grant writing)
  • Consider three month, one year, and two year goals
  • Consider making a written plan

What should you do as a mentor?

  • Consider your own goals and expectations of the relationship
  • Consider what schedule or structure works best for you
  • Realize that your mentoring role is separate from a supervisory/assessment role
  • Think about others who may be helpful as a co-mentors/advisors for the mentee

Suggested rough agenda for meetings = agenda negotiation, goal setting, topic discussion, summary, and plans to be accomplished before the next meeting

Cultivating the Relationship

  • Agree on objectives based on the mentee’s goals/needs and the mentor’s expertise
  • Identify responsibilities for each
  • Consider having a written agreement/mentoring plan
  • Both need to make the relationship a priority
  • Identify measures of progress and success
  • Discuss preferred format and frequency for future communications/meetings
    • Email vs. phone vs. face to face meetings
    • A standing meeting such as a monthly lunch, or as needed?
    • Should agenda be written and circulated beforehand?


  • All relationships naturally evolve with time
  • Separation may be planned (e.g. at a project’s completion) or occur naturally as the mentoring relationship has fulfilled its purpose
  • A mentor may suggest future directions for the previous mentee and facilitate the next mentoring relationship

For more information on the Functional Mentoring Program: please visit the IUEM Department website under the tab “Faculty Development” @

For more on mentoring, resources, meeting agendas, etc… please visit the new IUSM Mentoring Website @

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