The purpose of the peer mentoring circles is to provide support for faculty at all career levels, including new, early, middle, and late career faculty at Appalachian State University.
Providing faculty mentoring and career support is a central part of the university's "priority to invest in our employees" as articulated in the Strategic Plan 2022-2027 focus of "Empowering Human Potential through the Appalachian Experience." The priority is further defined in the following priority statement of the Strategic Plan:
Investing in Faculty and Staff Excellence
Dedicate and ensure ongoing resources to recruit, retain and support exceptionally talented faculty and staff.
- Emphasize innovative recruitment and retention strategies.
- Identify and invest in ongoing and clear paths for career advancement.
- Incentivize employee innovation and collaboration.
- Foster a team-oriented community of employees committed to quality of life and work.
What is a peer mentoring circle?
A mentoring circle is made up of a small group of people who meet regularly to discuss specific topics related to their professional development. Similar to group mentoring, it can consist of one mentor and multiple mentees or multiple mentors and mentees. The key difference here is that circle mentorship requires a facilitator. The facilitator takes care of administrative duties (e.g., scheduling, planning meeting topics and formats, communicating with mentees and university stakeholders) and multiple mentees who are usually at similar levels in their careers. With our Mountaineer Mentoring peer mentoring circles, we plan to have co-facilitators for our inaugural year.