mentMAINZ Mentoring Program

“Mentoring is building bridges into your future. To share life and work experiences in a trusting mentoring relationship with your mentor will boost your career orientation, inspire your character and support your level of professionalism.”
Katrin Klauer, Project Management Mentoring, Alumni, Graduate School MAINZ

If you, as a MAINZ PhD student, want to gain more clarity about your professional career after your doctorate, then becoming a mentMAINZ mentee will be very useful for you.

Your benefits from the mentMAINZ Mentoring Program:

  • enhance your professional orientation
  • clarify your career goal between science, industry, consulting, etc.
  • enlarge your professional network
  • gain insights into organizational cultures
  • gain insights into everyday work life
  • qualify your knowledge about leadership and managerial behavior
  • experience learning beyond scientific knowledge
  • strengthen your determination and clarity for your own career path
  • benefit from personal development and feedback

Mentoring has been identified as an important influence in professional development for both academic and non-academic careers. In particular, mentoring has established itself as an effective method in the field of professional orientation and personal development.

What is mentoring, how does mentMAINZ work and how do you become a mentee? Find out below!

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About mentoring

“On the one hand, my mentoring relationship gave me more academic input, even options for cooperation with my mentor’s department and, on the other hand, it made insights into my future career possible, expanded my networks, and supported me in my career planning."
Bernd Oschmann, MAINZ PhD student, mentMAINZ mentee

The main part of a mentoring program is the mentoring relationship. In this relationship, mentor and mentee form a direct personal tandem for a limited period of time. The mentor invests time in the mentee, pays attention to his /her professional orientation and development, and promotes this within the framework of the mentor´s options.

The mentor usually is a more senior and more experienced person. The mentoring relationship is an informal relationship over a limited period of time.

Mentoring is an efficient instrument in human resources development that has been verified in several studies. It has been proven that mentoring is very useful with regards to professional orientation, increasing career success, and for gaining understanding and clarity about functional roles. Additionally, mentoring is likely to stimulate job satisfaction.1)
The potential of mentoring programs is recognized by an increasing number of universities and educational institutions in Germany with mentoring programs.2)

1)Ryschka J, Solga M, Mattenklott A (2011) Praxishandbuch Personalentwicklung - Instrumente, Konzepte, Beispiele. 3. Aufl. Gabler, Wiesbaden.
Allen TD, Eby LT, Poteet ML, Lentz E, Lima L (2004) Career benefits with mentoring for protégés: a meta-Analysis. Journal of Applied Psychology 89 (1):127-136.
Blickle G (2000) Mentor-Protegé-Beziehungen in Organisationen. Zeitschrift für Abeits- und Organisationspsychologie 44:168-178.
Kammeyer-Mueller JD, Judge TA (2008) A quantitative review of mentoring research: Test of a model. Journal of Vocational Behavior 72:269-283.
Diehl S, Kéré U (2010) Mentoring wirkt! Hessisches Koordinierungsbüro des MentorinnenNetzwerks.

2)Blickle G, Witzki A, Schneider PB (2010) Die Bonner Mentoring-Studie: Effekte von Networking, Selbstoffenbarung, Bescheidenheit, sozialer Kompetenz und Macht. In: Kanning U, von Rosenstiel L, Schuler H(Hrsg.) Jenseits des Elfenbeinturms. Psychologie als nützliche Wissenschaft. Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen.

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How mentMAINZ operates

“What I benefited most from as a mentee is that I have greatly expanded my network in the scientific community through my mentor, and correspondingly got opportunities for scientific collaborations. Furthermore, triggered by discussions in the group coaching sessions, I started thinking more often about things like career plans, life-work balance, etc. This is helpful in situations of life transition, or when making important decisions. Finally, as an international student, it was also a very good experience for me to work/discuss together with other German students and looking at things/life from a different perspective.”
H., MAINZ PhD student, mentMAINZ mentee

The mentMAINZ mentoring program embeds a 12-month mentoring relationship between mentee and mentor in an 18-month process environment.
Within the mentoring relationship, mentMAINZ asks for 4 personal meetings between the mentee and his or her mentor.

The process environment is designed to frame a mentee´s orientation and development and to offer impulses and opportunities for reflection, in order to secure the harvest. The process environment is provided through mentMAINZ mentee coaching and individual mentee counseling.

The mentee groups start every January.
The Mentee Start Coaching in January helps all mentees to gain clarity with regards to

  • the decision about which potential field of the professional career should be the focus of the mentoring.
  • the decision about where the mentor should come from.

Within the first 6 months, the Mentee Coaching Sessions are aimed at empowering all mentees to

  • search for and contact a potential mentor.
  • start the mentoring relationship and to construct it sustainably.

Once the mentoring relationship has been established, reflecting on discussed topics and planning desired outcomes of the mentoring is enhanced in a mid-term Mentee Balance Coaching.
At the end of the mentoring relationship, final reflection and securing the qualification is ensured in a Mentee Closing Coaching.

mentMAINZ Mentees receive:

  • reimbursement of travel costs for meetings with their mentor
  • Mentee Group Coachings
  • opportunities for reflection within a mentee group no larger than 16 mentees
  • early announcements of MAINZ Workshops and MAINZ networking options
  • optionally: individual behavioral profiling from one of the world´s leading providers Success Insights

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Becoming a mentMAINZ mentee

“I think that the mentMAINZ program is not only useful but also extremely important. What really helped me was that, through my participation in mentMAINZ, I could profit immensely from the experience of others and thus successfully follow my own path. My mentor came from the industrial sector, which enabled me to gain concrete insights into professional life in an industry. I also had a very trustworthy relationship with my mentor, so I could ask her quite openly about things like applications and salary expectations, as well as job interviews. That helped me a lot. I also came to realize how important contacts are. Nowadays, good grades are not enough; you have to start to build your own network very early on. I used my time as a mentMAINZ mentee very actively for this. The support provided by Edeltraud Eller from the Graduate School was very professional and clarified many things; her availability was very helpful in many situations.“
Julia Krez, MAINZ Alumna, mentMAINZ mentee

The mentMAINZ Mentee groups start yearly in January.

When is it best to join?

  • For you, as a MAINZ student, there is no “best year” to start; this will depend on your personal perspectives.
  • For many MAINZ students, the end of the first year at MAINZ seems to be a good time to become a mentMAINZ mentee.
  • If you have to decide between an earlier or a later start for your time as a mentee, you should take into account planned secondments as well as your scheduled workload.

Group settlement and your application

  • Please submit your letter of motivation (about 1 page) until November 15th the year before the next mentee group starts in January to Katrin Klauer.
  • In November/December, all MAINZ students interested in becoming a mentMAINZ mentee in the following year will be invited to a personal interview with Katrin Klauer.
  • Each mentee group has up to 16 mentees.
  • In case we need to select mentees from the students interested in becoming a mentee, we will most likely select according to your remaining time at MAINZ, in order to give all students the chance to participate in mentMAINZ. In the unlikely case that we need additional selection criteria, we would select on the basis of the letter of motivation and the interview.

In case you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Katrin Klauer (

“For me, the mentoring program was great help in preparing for the job hunt. My mentor helped to identify possible weaknesses in my CV and introduced me to the day-to-day work in industry. He was instrumental in getting me to pursue an internship that got me new contacts and first-hand experience in industry. In a complementary way, the coaching sessions helped to define what I wanted from a future employer.”
S., MAINZ PhD student, mentMAINZ mentee

"The mentMAINZ program represented a wonderful kind of support during my doctorate. I received important stimuli from exchanges with fellow students in the events offered by the program, as well as from conversations with my mentor. My perspectives about possible career paths have become more differentiated and my own career planning has thus become more reliable. In particular, I profited greatly from the often informal exchanges, because we could openly discuss issues that concerned most of us but were rarely addressed outside of such a group."
Christian, MAINZ PhD student, mentMAINZ mentee

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