The National College of Physicians' (NCP) recognizes the importance of mentoring for effective career development and professional integration. To this end,the NCP's Task Force on Mentoring has developed a Mentor Database for medical students and young doctors(mentees) to connect with professional faculty and experienced physicians (mentors). NCP has compiled a list of resources for both mentors and mentees to better prepare for this relationship.
Become a NCP Mentor
NCP's Task Force Task Force on Mentoring encourages experienced physician members to sign up to act as mentors as well.
Information on experience medical students and faculty or practicing M.D.'s (mentors) that are willing to act as mentors is stored in the mentor database in the "Members-Only" section of the NCP website. Mentees seeking a mentor can now go online to find available mentors, read a short biography, find areas in which the mentor has specialized experience to provide advice, and contact the mentor.
Background on Mentoring
For medical students, having a physician who serves as a mentor may be one of the most valuable resources on the path to becoming a doctor. Mentoring relationships are particularly important for minority students or students who are in a medical school that does have a department of family medicine.
NCP has numerous resources available to medical students and residents, including curriculum directories, clinical research training programs, data facts and figures. A mentor program serves as a mechanism for two-way communication between physicians and medical students. Physician's offer their guidance and wisdom to medical students, and students in turn benefit from a mentor's knowledge and experience. The NCP allows users to find a mentor or sign up to be one.
Mentoring happens in both formal and informal settings. Some schools offer formal mentoring programs, special projects or networking. More informal mechanisms may include leadership opportunities and special interest mentoring. Finding a family physician mentor in any of these categories may help in your path through school.
Specializations for Mentors
Although the nature of the mentoring will vary from case to case, we expect that mentors that have indicated their area of "specialization" will be prepared to address a wide variety of concerns and questions from mentees on a continuing basis.
Mentors may select from one of four areas of specializations in the database:
Professional issues in the field.
Issues related to various career aspects of the profession.
Personal issues and coping skills.
Issues facing the profession.