In a profession as intellectually and emotionally demanding as nursing, mentorship becomes absolutely essential.
A good mentor can guide you through difficult situations, help you balance work and life, and impart the wisdom of experience years before you’ve even had the chance to make all of those teachable mistakes yourself.
Academic and professional guidance
Every Nursing student has a faculty advisor who works to support and guide their progress. Additionally, all freshman nurses are paired with alumni who are current, practicing nurses. This shadowing program, called “Nature of Nursing,” is a required course that makes real the practicalities of the nursing profession, and shows students the direct ways in which their education will be applied to their future nursing practice.
Support from day one
We also have a Peer Advisor program, under which incoming first-year nursing students are assigned an upperclass peer to help ease their transition into the School. Peer advisors reach out to new students during the summer, participate in orientation activities with their advisee, and are available throughout the academic year and beyond to help answer questions and provide support.
The HERstory/HIStory mentorship program was founded during the 2016-17 academic year by Penn students, faculty, and staff at W.E.B. Du Bois College House, including Penn Nursing’s Robin Stevens, PhD. Students of color at the House serve as mentors to African-American schoolchildren at Samuel Powel Elementary School, a K-4 public elementary school in West Philadelphia.
Matthew McHugh, PhD, JD, MPH, RN, CRNP, FAAN, will receive the 2017 AcademyHealth Mentoring Award from the Interdisciplinary Research Group on Nursing Issues (IRGNI). The award will be given at the group’s annual meeting on June 24th in New Orleans, Louisiana.