Home > leadership, Military, PAR journal, research, Teaching > Reflecting on Mentoring and counseling

Reflecting on Mentoring and counseling

the faculty i respect the most at our college are the ones who voluntarily take on the challenge of being a faculty advisor and engage the students in one on one educational and career counseling.

there is a move afoot in the Army to formalize and systematize the mentoring “program” across the force, and I hope that it doesn’t take hold though, as a formal process which then will get measured and assessed.

In my judgment what has made mentoring a very high quality experience for me (on both sides of the event) has been the voluntary aspect of it, and the freedom of the junior to seek out a meaningful or respected senior that is outside of the chain of command.

I have always considered it to be a badge of honor to have been selected by juniors, from afar, to help them through career choice points etc. It let me know I must be doing something right.

I have tried to carry on this idea as a faculty advisor on graduate monographs and have been honored by having students that I have taught, and also not taught, to review their work.  It’s  my highest priority work effort, and the one I am the most diligent with;  more so than even my own reseach I think.

I’d be disappointed if we started to measure how many mentor relationships a senior offier had and if we made it a compulsory program.  Would send the wrong message entirely.

I was speaking with a trusted and respected friend, an Army Command Sergeant Major serving in the field, and he echoed some of these same concerns.  To the extent we formalize it, we begin to lose the real value of it.

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