via:mento – Mentoring Program for Female Postdoctoral Researchers (Kiel University)

Home/via:mento – Mentoring Program for Female Postdoctoral Researchers (Kiel University)
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Description of Issues and Targets
Between doctorate and habilitation the proportion of women decreases. Women are clearly under-represented among those successfully accomplishing their Habilitation. In order to support female scientists on their career path after the PhD and on the next career step (habilitation/acquisition of habilitation equivalents – application – appointment), the mentoring program via:mento was launched in 2010.

For its participants via:mento pursues the following key objectives:

  • Reflection on the current career situation; planning and implementation of next career steps in academia
  • Encouragement to continue the scientific career path through exchange with role models
  • Expansion of scientific networks
  • Stimulating and broadening perspectives through exchange with other female scientists in their postdoc phase

Description of Offer/ Action
Three elements are connected in via:mento:

  1. Individual mentoring relationship with a female or male professor with the aim of individual, specialized consultation and reflection on further career development
  2. Workshops on interdisciplinary career-related topics such as career planning, communication/self-presentation, leadership, appointment procedures
  3. Themed events with experts and internal network meetings for interdisciplinary exchange and for collegial consultation between program participants

The program is open to female scientists of all departments of Kiel University. For each program run (duration: 21 months) about 15 Mentees are selected, which complete a competitive, two-stage selection process.

Implementation Approach
The program is affiliated with the Central Office for Gender Equality, Diversity & Family and is supervised by a project coordinator.

Formal Requirements
The funding for the project coordination must be provided.

Results and Modes of Action
via:mento is well-recieved since 2010 and the participants regard it as a valuable component of their individual career planning and development.

Success Criteria and Possible Obstacles
The female scientists themselves articulated the need for a mentoring program in the development phase. That’s why a high identification with via:mento existed from the outset. A university-internal advisory board supports the program.

This Offer is Part of the Category
Career Promotion of Women