Graduate College

Graduate College Mentoring Network

At Arizona State University one of the most essential elements of a quality graduate education is the opportunity it offers for connection – to a diverse graduate population, to broader communities of practice and resources, and to faculty and professional worlds. Mentoring offers this connection, providing graduate students with both interpersonal support and academic or career-focused guidance needed to successfully integrate interpersonal and academic identities and navigate career pathways.

The Graduate College Mentoring Network (GCMN), housed within the Graduate College, fosters and promotes a university-wide mentoring culture by:

  • Promoting community-building, cultural and academic diversity, engagement and inclusion through identity-based mentoring initiatives;
  • Connecting graduate students and post-doctoral scholars to academic and career-related mentoring resources across academic colleges;
  • Recognizing and rewarding outstanding mentors and mentoring initiatives across ASU;
  • Supporting academic departments and graduate faculty in creating and sustaining mentoring initiatives, best practices and programming models.

The GCMN fosters these values through four networks: community-building initiatives, faculty mentoring resources, mentoring excellence recognition, and academic and career development.

Community-building initiatives

ASU attracts students, staff, faculty and postdoctoral scholars from all demographics, and its scholarly communities are strengthened by diversity and inclusion of a multiplicity of perspectives and ideas. The Graduate College mentoring initiatives offer engagement and navigation of academic, cultural and interpersonal identities in meaningful ways that enrich all graduate education and foster pathways between undergraduate and graduate education and professional careers.

SHADES cross-cultural mentoring

The SHADES cross-cultural mentoring program is a peer-to-peer mentoring program designed to encourage and develop intercultural competencies and identities. SHADES provides a forum for students to embrace and discuss  the roles of identity in academia and our lives, to seek out peers with shared social or cultural identities, and to explore the intersections of identity, learning and public discourse. The Graduate College’s Interdisciplinary Research Colloquium (IRC) provides a substantive link to academic research and collaboration as a for-credit option to SHADES participants.

SHADES is open to all graduate students and postdoctoral scholars. Apply to join the 2017-2018 cohort as a mentor or mentee today. Note: you must have a current ASURITE ID to apply.

HUES LGBT+ mentoring

Designed to bolster community engagement, increase representation, and provide critical identity-development and engagement opportunities to ASU’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBT+) communities, HUES is open to any LGBT+ undergraduate, graduate student or postdoctoral scholars. Mentoring matches are made based on participant preference with options for peer, faculty or staff matching.

Graduate Student Organizations

Although less structured and with a greater emphasis on collect interest and interpersonal development than the one-to-one personal development offered by mentoring, graduate student organizations are an excellent way to build academic and cultural self-efficacies. ASU has over 1,000 student-run clubs and organizations designed to support academics, culture, religion/spirituality, art, politics, sports, and much more, with over 60 specifically created by and for graduate students. The Graduate College encourages graduate students to enrich their ASU experiences by getting involved and networking with other graduate students. In addition to mentoring, joining a graduate student group is an excellent way to develop professional contacts, engage with your academic network, or find connections within the greater Sun Devil community.

To learn more about these opportunities for involvement at ASU, visit our graduate student organizations page.


Faculty mentoring resources

Fostering strong paraprofessional relationships with faculty allows graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to network and prepare for careers.

The Graduate Faculty search tool encourages graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to identity and connect with graduate faculty resources at ASU, including research professors, scholars, and ASU research affiliates.

For an introduction to the importance of faculty-to-faculty, faculty-to-new faculty and faculty-to-post-doctoral scholar mentoring, we recommend the Jennifer Lundquist and Joya Misra Inside Higher Ed article Faculty-to-Faculty Mentoring.

Mentoring excellence and resources

As part of its commitment to and acknowledgement of mentoring as a vital component of the graduate student experience, the Graduate College recognizes and rewards outstanding mentoring and strives to demonstrate the essential nature of mentoring to student success and professional development. The Graduate College recognizes and supports excellence in mentoring institution-wide through its Outstanding Faculty Mentor Awards and Outstanding Mentors Speaker’s Bureau.

Outstanding Faculty Mentor Awards

Each fall, up to three faculty are recognized for the Graduate College’s Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award. Nominations for the 2017-2018 Outstanding Faculty Mentor awards will open August 1, 2017, and will be collected through September 15. For more information on nominations, go here.

Mentoring Resources and Best Practices

Effective and meaningful mentoring starts with making the right mentoring connections. Before exploring the mentoring resources below, download the GCMN quick reference guides, The Mentoring Connection: Choosing a Mentoring Program and The Mentoring Connection: Peer Mentoring, to learn more about:

  • Choosing the right mentoring program within that structure;
  • Evaluating mentoring goals and outcomes;
  • Selecting a mentoring structure that best fits your needs;
  • Types of mentoring programs.

University-wide mentoring support

The Graduate College is a member of the ASU Mentoring Council, an affiliation of mentoring initiatives institution-wide. By sharing resources and cross-promoting mentoring opportunities, the ASU Mentoring Council advances the visibility of mentoring programs across the university.

Academic and career development resources connect graduate students and postdoctoral scholars to academic and career-related mentoring resources across academic colleges.

ASU offers many opportunities, both formal and informal, for students and scholars to connect in mentoring communities.