WaMPS Mentoring Programs

Mission statement

Each year, WaMPS offers a series of mentoring programs targeted at providing support to students at different stages in their academic career. We do this by matching students with mentors. Mentoring is multi-faceted, providing an embodied experience to develop professionally and personally for both the mentor and mentee. If there are any questions, please direct them to Carissa Myers or Roy Salinas for more information.

 

Undergraduate-Undergraduate Mentoring Program

The undergraduate-undergraduate peer mentoring program is jointly facilitated by WaMPS and SPS. The purpose of this mentoring program is to pair upperclassmen in the Physics and Astronomy department with those who are newer to the program (underclassmen, transfer students, folks who changed their major) to form stronger connections between fellow undergrads. Mentors will give insight into the undergraduate experience by helping mentees navigate through the physics major at Michigan State!

Please fill out the form to become a mentor or mentee for this program by Wednesday, Septermber 14.

Graduate-Undergraduate Mentoring Program

The Graduate-Undergraduate Mentoring Program is a collaborative initiative between WaMPS and Stellar physics with the aid of Society of Physics Students (SPS). We pair up graduate and undergraduate students together to provide enlightenment in research, personal development, and camaraderie. 

To join this program, please stay tuned for updates!

Graduate-Graduate Mentoring Program

This is a mentoring program where we match first year graduate students with second year or higher year graduate students. Purpose being to ameliorate the process in transitioning from undergraduate to graduate as it can be challenging and is paramount to the success of an individual in graduate school.


To join this program, there is a common application process for both mentors and mentees. Mentor-Mentee matches are made based on responses to this application. We have placed a lot of thought into the ways to best support the needs of the mentees.

Application deadline: Wednesday, September 14th, 2022

REU Mentoring Program

The MSU Department of Physics and Astronomy and its research groups hold the REU Summer Internship Program, which is a 10-week internship for up to 12 undergraduate students and is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). Through the collaborative initiative between WaMPS and the MSU Department of Physics and Astronomy, WaMPs organizes the REU Mentoring Program - a program where these undergraduate students are paired with a MSU graduate student. 

The REU Mentoring Program was built to provide supplemental resources and support for MSU Physics and Astronomy REU students. They meet and build relationships with graduate students, learn about opportunities available in physics and more broadly within academia and industry, and engage in social activities where they get to know each other, their mentors, and other REU students at MSU. 
 

Social Activities

WaMPS recognizes the importance of not only building community and a network, but also the importance of mental health. Our Mentoring Co-Chairs organize picnics, trivia, game night, and other activities where the REU students can socialize and relax.

Mentoring Program(s) Supports

The Mentoring Program(s) strive to support undergraduate students by:

  • Collectively creating and maintaining a safe space for the cultivation of open, authentic, and honest relationships between graduate and undergraduate students
  • Providing insight into graduate studies and life through exposure to and via encouragement to explore different disciplines and post-baccalaureate tracks 
  • Encourage students to reflect on their academic experiences and consider how they wish to move forward with their future whether pursuing graduate studies or industry


These goals can be met by discussing the following topics with undergraduates provided below:

  • Discussing the norms and expectations of the mentee/mentor relationship
  • Transition to being a graduate students (norms & expectations)
  • Differences and similarities of the norms and expectations of an undergraduate student vs. a graduate student (adjusting to the university)
  • Mental health
  • Underrepresentation that the parties are facing or creating awareness
  • Discussing tests/exams & coursework
  • Applying for research positions (including REUs)
  • Research goals, topics, & practices
  • Research advisors and mentors
  • Discussing the long-term career goals of both mentee and mentor
  • Discussing work-life balance or time management


The Mentoring Program(s) strive to support graduate students by:

  • Cultivating healthy and equitable relationships as mentors
  • Building communication skills through discussion and reflection
  • Encouragement to share and reflect on their own experiences to give insight to or validate mentees’ experiences, and support the growth of their mentees and themselves through discussion of successes and challenges in their (referencing graduate or undergraduate students) careers  


These goals can be met by discussing the following topics with graduate students provided below:

  • Transition to being graduate student (norms & expectations)
  • Mental Health
  • Subject exams
  • Research goals, topics & practices
  • Research advisors and mentors
  • Camaraderie
  • Discussing long-term career goals
  • Work-Life Life Balance or Time Management
  • Teaching


The Mentoring Program(s) strive to support postdoctoral research fellows by:

  • Sharing knowledge and experience with current graduate student(s)
  • Provide exposure to various different backgrounds 
  • Aim at further developing communication as a scientist 


These goals can be met by discussing the following topics with postdocs provided below:

  • Academic job applications 
  • Grant applications and writing
  • Developing and managing collaborations
  • Developing and managing research projects 
  • Writing and publishing papers
  • Transitioning to being an Early Career Researcher
     

Contact

For any questions regarding the Mentoring Programs contact Carissa Myers or Roy Salinas.

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