For several years, the SSAR mentorship program has paired young members with more experienced members to help them get the most out of our annual conference, the Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (JMIH). Starting at JMIH 2019, the SSAR has joined forces with the Herpetologists’ League to expand the program.
Signing up for the program
The JMIH registration form will have a checkbox for students to indicate their interest in the program. If a student checks the box, then their contact information will be automatically sent to the program organizers. The program organizers will send out a questionnaire for students to indicate their research and career interests, and they will use the responses to make mentor-mentee matches.
Folks who’d like to act as a mentor for the program can check a different box on the registration form to indicate their interest. We would love to have older students, postdocs, and more established society members as mentors in the program.
How the program works
Everyone in the program meets as a group near the beginning of JMIH. This meeting gives everyone the chance to get to know each other over a meal provided by the SSAR, and it provides an opportunity for program organizers to give suggestions for making the most out of the mentorship interactions.
After the initial meeting, mentor-mentee pairs can meet up when and how they choose. Interactions often include attending poster sessions together, checking in over coffee, and/or talking over a meal. Mentors can also help their mentees to meet other researchers.