Bringing Female Role Models into the Spotlight – the WiS Mentor Program
Feeling confused about how to take your next steps in life? Or would you like to help a younger woman take her next steps in life? Take your chance to guide, or, be guided by a woman in science via Women in Science’s (WiS) new mentor program.
by Emily Eriksson and Amanda Ljung
The founding of the mentor program
Women in Science is an organization initiated by students at Karolinska Institutet. Its main goal is to create a network of women* involved in science and to provide them with resources and tools to help them achieve their goals. These goals could include advancement in their careers, improving independence, running their own business or how to achieve work-life balance. The organization’s most important task is listening to the needs of its 300 members and channeling those needs into actions. By demand of their members, WiS will therefore launch a mentor program for them this autumn. The participants of the program will take part in both one-on-one meetings and group sessions or workshops. The program depends largely on the willingness of the mentee to receive guidance and the program is designed individually, meaning that the time-frame and outline will be flexible and personal.
Time to bring female role models into the spotlight
The science community has a history of gender inequality and signs of this still linger in many ways. As a result of this, it may seem as though there is a lack of female role models in the field. We in WiS claim that there are plenty: if you want to find them. We believe that identifying these women and bringing them into the spotlight will help create a healthy and positive environment for women wanting to pursue a career in science. This is an important step towards dealing with the potential waste of human talent that occurs when females do not feel like they belong.
There are plenty of female role models in the field of science – if you want to find them.
What’s in it for the mentors and mentees?
As a mentee you have the opportunity to get to know a woman with experience within the field of science and ask all the questions you have about possible career paths and personal goals. Since the program will be designed individually we encourage both English and Swedish speakers, students and non-students, bachelors and master students. The only criteria for joining the program as a mentee is that you define yourself as a woman*, are a member of WiS, above the age of 18 and not beyond master’s level at university.
To potential mentors: have you ever experienced the need for guidance by a female role model? Someone you can relate and look up to? If you have, we hope you remember this feeling and therefore have a reason to provide that support for another young woman. By taking on this role you will have the opportunity for self-reflection, personal development and to create new, inspiring relationships. There is no need to have prior experience, we do not even want to look at your CV: the only criteria is that you define yourself as a woman and that you are beyond graduate level at university or working in the science sector.
Sign me up!
Visit the WiS website at www.womeninscience.se to find more information about criteria for joining the program and application forms. Any questions are welcome to be sent to [email protected]
We use an inclusive definition of “woman” and welcome applications from everyone that identifies as a woman.
Published on web only
Photographer: Isabelle Wemar
Proofreader: Sofia Pilström
Editor: Lauren Lyne