Role models, mentors and sponsors
Video clip: Christine has recently joined a new University group mentoring scheme for post-doctoral scientists, all of whom are women at the same career stage.
In your department now do you have a mentoring scheme?
Within the University we do have a mentoring scheme, and I’ve signed up for that and so I have a mentor. It’s still at the early stages of the mentoring relationship I think. We’ve had our first meeting and the plan is to have four over the course of the next year so three more to go. We’ve got another one planned in a couple of months. And that’s been really helpful. It’s not one to one mentoring, we’re in a group of four and we’re four female post-doctoral scientists and my mentor in that setting is a female scientist. She’s not a clinician but it’s quite good for just, that forum is very good for discussing post-doctoral research work and you know trying to establish yourself as an independent scientist.
So the other people in the group, the other post-doctoral scientists are at a similar stage to me, we’ve all just submitted our theses within the last year. So it’s, it’s pretty good to try and get that support because within the clinical scheme you have an educational supervisor and you know you are directly supervised quite a lot. You’ve got lots of clinical supervisors as well as your educational supervisors. You’ve got the head of the school of ophthalmology, and so you’re quite protected but in terms of trying to establish yourself as a scientist, especially when you’re a clinician, it can feel a bit like uncharted territory. So it’s nice to be within that scheme that the University’s offered yes, it’s relatively new.