The success of new academic faculty, including developing their leadership potential, is crucial to the colleges, institutes, and the School of Allied Health Professions at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. To be successful, there must be a strong organizational commitment to mentoring.
“Creating the mentoring culture requires focus, discipline, time, and patience” (Zachary, 2005).
There should be a shared vision of mentorship within each College and across UMMC to embed mentorship within the learning culture including an infrastructure that supports mentoring activities and has leaders who serve as role models to encourage mentor and mentee participation. The mentorship program must be visible through actions, an online presence, local and regional newsworthiness, celebrations of mentoring success, and recognition of mentors in annual performance evaluations, promotion and tenure, awards for best mentors, and the provision of faculty time for mentor-mentee/protégé meetings.
Mentoring can improve academic achievement (Steiner, Lanphear, Curtis, and Vu, 2002). Formal mentoring programs increase retention rates of new faculty, enhance personal satisfaction of career choice, improve faculty morale, assist in leadership development, and reduce stress and prevent burnout while adding value to the University and its learning culture including the reduction of faculty replacement costs. High faculty satisfaction improves student, resident, and postdoctoral fellow recruitment, helps in obtaining research grants, and adds to the recognition of the University through publications and the provision of high-quality, safe-patient care.