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Fellows Mentoring and Support Initiative

Program and Goal

The purpose of the Graduate College’s (GC) Fellows Mentoring and Support Initiative is to expand outreach efforts to Diversifying Faculty in Higher Education in Illinois (DFI) and Abraham Lincoln (Lincoln) Fellowship recipients at UIC. DFI and Lincoln Fellows have access to additional mentoring, advice, and referral support from GC faculty and staff.  Fellows can meet in a "home a way from home" setting to engage in various career development workshops, scholarly, and community-building events. Ms. Demetria Ward-Kato will serve as the contact person for both Lincoln and DFI fellows. The GC Assistant and Associate Deans and other staff will serve as mentors. In the near future, we will expand the mentoring network to include alumni recipients of the DFI and Lincoln Fellowships.

Activities and Services

The Fellows Mentoring Initiative has seven key components.

  • One-on-one meetings - GC Assistant and Associate Deans hold individal [1 hour] and walk-in appointments [15 min.] for Fellows to discuss academic, professional, and other related to success in their graduate programs.
  • Peer Mentoring - Junior graduate students are encouraged to connect with advanced graduate mentors. Alumni of DFI and UIC Lincoln Fellowships also serve as mentors to fellows.
  • Career Development - GC staff members coordinate campus-wide general focus workshops on topics like: absrtact writing, preparing for the academic job market, stress management, etc.
  • Colloquia - Fellows, alumni, faculty, and staff present their research in an group of 10-15 people. Four to six sessions are held each year. 
  • IALHEA Forum - The Illinois African American and Latino Higher Education Alliance [IALHEA] provides and opportunity for students to dialogue and present research among other graduate and undergraduate students.
  • Open Dialogue - These sessions between DFI and Lincoln Fellows, Directors of Graduate Studies, support staff, and UIC/GC administrators will discuss issues and graduate student concerns. The Graduate College dialogue sessions will take place twice each academic year.
  • Recognition Ceremony - This formal event honors Fellows who are graduating with a master's degree, doctoral degree as well as other significant academic and professional achievements.  

to schedule an appointment or for more information please contact: Lunaire D. Ford, Ph.D., Assistant Dean, Graduate College, lford@uic.edu or (312) 413-2556.