The primary goal of the MinT program is to best equip Teaching Mentors so that they can gain in their own professional development as well as be effective mentors to the TAs in their departments, thereby improving the teaching experience for everyone. To this end, the MinT program organizes the following types of events:
This orientation was excellent!
2008/09 MinT Participant
During the Fall quarter, we hold two half-day training workshops to allow Teaching Mentors to develop a set of skills necessary for building a successful mentor-mentee relationship. MinT Fellows are required to attend both workshops. The material presented at the workshops includes information on developmental stages of TAs, running classroom observations, and giving constructive feedback to TAs. During the workshops, Teaching Mentors also have many opportunities to engage in challenging role play scenarios of possible interactions with TAs.
More information on this year's workshops is available on the Current MinT Events page.
Having opportunities to periodically re-visit some of the topics covered in the workshops and to interact with the other Teaching Mentors is incredibly valuable. The MinT program therefore includes one to two luncheons per quarter. One of them will usually be in a roundtable format to allow for discussion among the participants. The second one will be somewhat more structured, with further opportunities to practice mentoring skills such as classroom observations and giving feedback to mentees. Both formats for the luncheons will allow Teaching Mentors to share ideas and ask for suggestions on how to address any challenges that may have come up.
In addition to the benefits that Teaching Mentors receive from their interactions with each other, the MinT workshops and luncheons allow individual departments time to talk about goals for the year that best fit the needs of their TAs, while being able to receive input from CTL and the other departments taking part in the program. TA Training Directors/Coordinators from the respective departments are invited to participate in all MinT events.
Listening to ideas and suggestions from other Mentors was extremely helpful. They provided solutions to different mentoring challenges and also gave advice about changing established precedents.
2008/09 MinT Participant
In the past, many departments would stay for a while after lunch meetings to continue their conversations, since everyone was already infused with new ideas and ready to brainstorm ways to better support their TAs. In some cases, having these discussions as part of MinT events obviates the need to call a separate departmental meeting on the topic and may jump-start new and innovative approaches to existing teaching activities that had not been considered before.
In an effort to provide support to the participants even outside of the organized MinT activities, this website includes a collection of documents and information (SUNet ID required) relevant to mentoring. Here, Teaching Mentors can find hand-outs from the workshops, examples of classroom observations and feedback documents (including mid-quarter surveys and Small Group Evaluations), links to CTL publications, and other resources.
Depending on the participants' needs, the online resources section might be expanded to include a collaborative space where Teaching Mentors can share tips and experiences with each other, post details about the mentoring program in their department. and document their activities throughout the year. This growing collection of information relating to mentoring would serve as an archive of useful documents and forms that each department develops as part of their mentoring efforts. This would also help new Teaching Mentors get up to speed quickly on the existing efforts in the departments.