Mentoring Medical Students
Inspire and guide medical students to deepen their interests in global health
Mentorship is a critical component of a student's educational advancement and can be a rewarding experience for both students and mentors. Global Health Program (GHP) mentors engage with students longitudinally in the areas of research, advocacy, and other health equity-focused projects.
Why should I participate?
Mentor-mentee relationships are both personally and professionally rewarding. As a mentor, you’ll help develop and guide the next generation of leaders in global health. In addition, the longitudinal nature of this program enables GHP students to deeply engage in activities that support and further advance specific project(s) aims and outputs, while offering a potentially diverse set of skills and experience that can enhance your work.In the past, students have been critical to completing sub-studies and other project activities within their mentor’s research portfolio(s).
What is the time commitment?
We encourage mentors to work with medical students throughout their time at DGSOM. There are two options for mentorship that require varying levels of commitment:
- The Global Health Equity Pathway, our most intensive curriculum for students, includes a 6–12 month on site experience in the third year of medical school, called Discovery Year, during which students will be based full-time at a partner organization and embedded within the organization’s routine work. This dedicated time furthers a student’s in-depth learning and can contribute substantially to core activities that are a priority for mentors and partner sites. (Detailed information about being a partner site for students Global Health Equity Pathway can be found here.) We encourage mentors to work with 2–3 students from the same cohort (if possible) so that students can be placed together at a partner site for Discovery Year. Funds for student costs are provided.
- We also offer a Global Health Equity Concentration, whereby students are required to complete a smaller global health or health equity project but are not required to spend time at a partner organization (and are not required to complete Discovery Year). These projects may include a cumulative 6–20 week commitment from students and are flexible to meet the needs and availability of mentors and students.
What resources are available?
Mentors of Pathway students may apply for $500–$2,000 per mentor per year (based on available funding) to support their efforts. Mentors of Concentration students may also apply, although funding is more limited and available on a first-come first-serve basis. (Funding may cover an array of costs if the expenses are directly related to work done with the student, such as software, publication fees, data collection, transcription, translation costs, etc.) Please access the form here to apply for funding.
The Mentorship Compact, developed by the UC Global Health Institute (UCGHI), provides a strong guide for both mentors and students on how to engage with each other throughout the longitudinal Global Equity Health Pathway. Additional support is provided by GHP to encourage effective partnerships between mentors and mentees, including the opportunity to share resources/best practices on mentoring global health trainees with colleagues across the globe and build personal networks with other mentors through annual virtual meetings and a mentor listserv (participation optional).
If you would like to learn more about being a mentor, please contact Dr. Traci Wells at TWells@mednet.ucla.edu.
"Mentoring medical students is, by far, the best part of my job. It's a privilege to work with students on a research project or to provide professional and career mentoring. I frequently think about the talent and commitment of the medical students with whom I have worked and the global health challenges we are facing now, and that the students will face in the coming decades. Their passion makes me optimistic that we will be in good hands. I'm privileged to be a small part of their education and to contribute to the leaders of tomorrow."
- Tom Coates, PhD, Medicine/Infectious Diseases