Mentor Match Program

The Academic Staff Mentoring Committee (ASMC) coordinates the Mentor Match Program, a nine-month program designed to connect new academic staff members to the wider UW-Madison community.

Participants in the Mentor Match Program are matched with a mentor or mentee(s). The nature of the mentor/mentee relationship is informal and not part of the organizational structure of an employee’s unit. In fact, we often try to match people who are not employed by the same division and sometimes mentors and mentees are in very different fields. The mentoring relationship is designed by the mentor and mentee based on their respective personal and professional goals.

Some benefits of the Mentor Match Program include:

  • meeting new people and connecting with colleagues across campus
  • learning about academic staff careers, career progression, and campus resources
  • setting personal and professional goals
  • gaining strategies to manage work-life balance

Participation in the Mentor Match program introduces employees who are new to campus to opportunities and perspectives beyond their own jobs. It also provides the opportunity for more experienced employees to share their professional experience and knowledge in ways that are personal, fulfilling, and meaningful.

All UW-Madison employees are welcome to join the committee’s LinkedIn group to read relevant articles and participate in timely discussions about mentoring.

“Mentoring is to support and encourage people to manage their own learning in order that they may maximize their potential, develop their skills, improve their performance and become the person they want to be.”

—Eric Parsloe

Annual Program Timeline

The Mentor Match Program is an annual nine-month program starting in early fall and running until early May:

  • August/September: All academic staff receive an email invitation to participate in the program as a mentor or mentee
  • Early October: Mentor matches notified
  • Late October: Kickoff event
  • Winter and Spring: Seminars (optional, open to all Academic Staff)
  • April/May: Wrap-up event
  • May: Program evaluation

In addition, matches coordinate meetings on their own. The anticipated time commitment is approximately 1-2 hours per month. In some cases, matches can be made throughout the year – email the committee at if you are interested.

“The mentor program is an outstanding way to make connections on a large campus. I learned so much as a mentor, it really felt like a peer-to-peer effort of collaborative support!”

—2020-2021 Mentor

Become a Mentor

Mentors are always needed! Matches are made based on the mentor’s and mentee’s shared goals, experience, and interests. ASMC provides mentors with resources to support your service.

People who make good mentors typically:

  • have experience at UW-Madison and/or with mentoring
  • spot the potential in others
  • are resourceful guides
  • display patience and tolerance
  • give encouragement
  • see the big picture in situations

Unsure if you are ready to serve as a mentor? Complete the Mentor Readiness Assessment.

“There is always something to be gained by meeting a new colleague and connecting him/her with resources that will help his/her career in the future no matter how insignificant you may think the recommendation is. It’s really rewarding!”

– Kelly Miller, 2022-2023 Mentor

“The program was a great encouragement for me to step out of my shell and get to know others on campus and learn more about what they do and their path. It was also great to have a neutral space to discuss sensitive issues. Also, my mentee had a different cultural background, and it was a great opportunity to for me to explore my assumptions and to help reinforce that my perspective on issues and experiences is not universal among my peers. Overall, it was a great opportunity, and very flexible so we could make the relationship something that worked well for both of us.”

– 2020-2021 Mentor

Request a Mentor

UW-Madison academic staff members with one year of employment at UW-Madison are eligible to request a mentor.

People who make good mentees typically:

  • are goal oriented,
  • seek challenges,
  • take initiative,
  • show eagerness to learn, and
  • take personal responsibility.

Mentees drive the relationship with their mentor; therefore, you should have a clear sense of what you hope to accomplish through the Mentor Match Program. Matches are made based on the mentor’s and mentee’s shared goals, experience, and interests.

Unsure if you are ready for a mentor? Complete the Mentee Readiness Assessment.

Previous mentees in the program have said:

“The mentor/mentee match program offers a unique opportunity to talk with someone outside of your work group to get fresh perspectives on how to grow, change, and improve how work is being done.”

– 2020-2021 Mentee

“I was surprised at how nice it was to connect with other new or early career employees on campus, in addition to my mentor. Despite everyone in our group working in different departments and in different capacities, we connected through our mutual experiences at the university and with the academic environment. Especially during the pandemic, my mentor really focused on self-reflection and us as individuals, not just employees. It was unlike any prior mentoring experience I’ve had, and changed how I view my career and my professional goals. I also really appreciated being able to discuss personal thoughts and experiences related to work, without having any pressure of hierarchy that you would with coworkers or your supervisor.”

– 2020-2021 Mentee

“As a first-year employee, I found the Mentor Match program to be really helpful. I really valued meeting more people from across campus and forming connections. I feel like I’ve added another person to my campus “support team” and appreciate their insights, experience, and advice — especially valuing their opinions, since we work in different areas. We plan to continue meeting into the future.”

—2022-2023 Mentee

Please contact the committee chair/co-chairs for more information.

Career and Campus Resources

The following list of campus and career resources has been generated and curated by participants in the Academic Staff Mentor Match program – it is not all-inclusive. Contact us if you have additional suggestions!

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UW-Madison General Resources for Employees

UW-Madison Academic Staff Resources

Other UW-Madison Mentoring Programs

While the Mentor Match Program only serves academic staff, several units on campus offer
mentoring programs and resources to faculty, staff, and students, including:

This list is not all inclusive. Please contact us to have your mentoring program listed!

Networking Opportunities

Career and Professional Development

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Resources

  • Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement: The DDEEA works to increase access for underrepresented minorities in STEM; eliminate the achievement gap between majority and underrepresented students; recruit and retain a more diverse faculty and staff; prepare all our students, staff and faculty to thrive personally and professionally in a world that is diverse, global and interconnected; enhance the campus climate for inclusion.
  • Inclusion Resources on Campus: Workshops, conferences, lunch & learns, initiatives, and other activities that have served the campus community in support of equity and inclusivity.
  • UW-Madison Diversity Inventory: Searchable online database of diversity and inclusion programs, events, research, support services, and assessment on campus and in the Madison community.
  • UW-Madison Diversity Forum: Annual all-campus and community Diversity Forum to discuss, share and learn about contemporary issues of equity, diversity, inclusion, and belonging.
  • UW-Madison Office of Strategic Diversity Planning and Research: The OSDPR is responsible for research, evaluation and assessment actions; leading quality improvement activities; and supporting internal and external reviews relating to diversity, equity and inclusion across the UW–Madison campus.
  • UW-Madison 2022 Staff Climate Survey: Summary report and interactive dashboard of results from the 2022 Staff Climate Survey.
  • Search and Screen Committee Resources: Resources on recruiting and hiring job applicants from diverse backgrounds.