One of the most important elements of your doctoral education is the formative relationship established between you and your thesis mentor. This relationship forms the basis for your initial scientific development and is a primary source for your formal and informal acculturation as a scientist.

Mentor selection and expectations

By the end of your fifth research or laboratory rotation, you'll be asked to select a thesis adviser with whom you'd like to carry out your thesis research. Only Mayo Clinic faculty specifically designated by Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences as having full faculty privileges may serve as thesis advisers.

Your selected adviser should be available to meet regularly with you to evaluate your research progress; discuss the problems that will inevitably arise; and provide appropriate encouragement, chastisement and direction. Your thesis adviser also will help you form a Thesis Advisory Committee, complete the degree program tool and develop your thesis proposal. Advisers also provide personal, professional and academic advice.

Mentoring agreement

As with any relationship, student-mentor interactions are not immune to conflicts. To assist you and your mentor in defining expectations and minimizing miscommunications that can lead to conflicts, you and your mentor are required to complete and submit these forms (must be logged in to the Mayo Clinic network) upon selection of a thesis mentor:

Mentoring resources

Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences and CCaTS expect scholar-mentor interactions to be guided by the same principles of mutual respect that are applicable throughout Mayo Clinic. Refer to the mutual respect and student and faculty mentor relationship policies on the Mayo intranet (must be logged in to the Mayo network).

Several courses and seminars are available to Mayo Clinic staff and students to build interpersonal, professional and mentoring skills. Find mentoring modules in My Learning (must be logged in to the Mayo network) for more information.