Mentoring Style and Structure
Mentoring needs vary widely across students and over time for individual students. I seek to tailor my mentoring style to individual students, and adjust it over time for each student as they need. The crucial component of this is regular communication. I believe it is essential to have a scheduled weekly meeting with each student. For students who are at stages where they are working independently and need little mentoring, this may be just two minutes to check in. For students at stages where they need more input, I may spend hours working with them. Overall, I would describing my mentoring style as hands-off, but always nearby.
My research group has been approximately at carrying capacity since Fall 2010. I limit the size of my group to ensure that I can provide appropriate mentoring and supervision for all members. While I will always be the ultimate mentor or supervisor and expect to maintain close interactions with all group members, I believe having a diversified stage structure allows for within-group mentoring and collaboration. For instance, post-docs serve as additional mentors for grad students, grad students serve as additional mentors for undergrads, and so on.
– Charles Mitchell
Advance scientific knowledge
Enhance public appreciation and understanding of scientific knowledge
Uphold the integrity of science
Contribute to the collegial and intellectual culture of academia
Respect human diversity
Fulfill members’ goals for advancement
Consistently publish articles in leading journals
Graduate all students in a timely manner
Prepare undergraduates for graduate programs by mentoring them as researchers
Teach courses effectively
Broadly serve the Biology Department, the University of North Carolina, and professional field of ecology