Resources for Faculty and Staff

Mentorship Academy Workshops

High quality supervision and mentorship is central to an institution committed to seeing their graduate students flourish in their careers and in the contributions they make to the public good. A commitment to high quality supervision and mentorship is also tied to the value educators have to the continued expression of human potential in creative and intellectual pursuits. (See Krogman Report on Graduate Supervision for more information.)

Our ever-changing world is reflected on our campus. The increasing diversity of our students, the increasing interdisciplinary nature of academic research, the increasing number of students not on tenure track career paths and the development of graduate student-professor relationships as co-learners are just some examples. Thankfully, there is knowledge available to help navigate the changes and ensure successful mentorship relationships. To stay current as mentors, supervisors of graduate student require ongoing professional development.  

The goal of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research’s Mentorship Academy is to support supervisors of graduate students and foster a University of Alberta community of faculty members and staff committed to high quality supervision and mentorship of graduate students.

Mentorship Academy Sessions

As part of the Mentorship Academy, FGSR offers workshops and talks for graduate administrators (including coordinators, associate chairs, and deans) and faculty members (including post-doctoral fellows). One recent presenter, Dr. Suzanne Ortega, led a stimulating discussion on "How to Nurture a Culture of Wellbeing for Graduate Students" (Nov. 14, 2019); another, Jennifer Ward, offered her reflections on "Conceptualizing Mentorship through a Decolonial and Indigenized Framework" (Jan. 29). And on Feb. 28, Lionel Laroche provided important insights on "How to Talk to Students." Following are the details of our next talk.

Mentoring for Career Conversations: Supporting Graduate Students in Times of Uncertainty

October 26, 2020, from 12:00 to 1:30 p.m./ Register here

A graduate degree develops knowledge, skills, and competencies that are transferable to a multiplicity of careers both inside and outside the academy. In fact, we know that our graduate students are seeking career opportunities in all fields of work. A 2016 survey of University of Alberta PhD students revealed that only 28% of respondents identified “professor” as their career goal.  While you may feel you do not have the expertise to act as a career advisor, as a supervisor you are well-suited to having career conversations with your graduate students, and to provide them with the mentorship they are seeking.

Using the Individual Development Plan (IDP) of the Professional Development Requirement as a starting point, this workshop will equip you with an understanding of why you are ideally positioned to have career conversations with your students, and will provide fundamentals for supporting an effective conversation. You will leave the workshop knowing that you can play a key role in providing meaningful support for your students’ professional aspirations and will have a better understanding of why these conversations are critical to your students' success. Tools and tips will be shared to help you start, engage, and navigate career conversations with your students, even if the student's career ambitions lie outside of your own career journey. 


Tyree McCrackin
, BA, BEd
Graduate Student Career Advisor, Career Centre

Tyree works directly with graduate students and post-doctoral fellows at the University of Alberta's Career Centre.  Before coming to the University of Alberta, Tyree worked in human resources in various oil and gas related industries.  His first role was with the University of Alberta's Graduate Student Internship Career Advisor responsible for supporting GSIP applicants and interns. He now works as a career advisor, helping current graduate students, PDFs, and alumni with work search documents, interview preparation, and career management strategies.  Tyree has a BA and BEd, and is also enrolled in graduate studies at the U of A.

Deanna Davis, PhD
Senior Lead and Educational Curriculum Developer, Graduate Teaching and Learning
Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research

Deanna led the implementation of the Professional Development Requirement in 2016 and is responsible for design, development and delivery of programming and resources that support the Individual Development Plan of the Professional Development Requirement. This work has included large collaborative projects supported by the Government of Alberta, including the implementation of the Professional Development Online Platform and campusBRIDGE. Deanna has led numerous opportunities for career exploration and management, setting graduate students on a path for success, and positioning them to impact their community and beyond. Deanna is also responsible for the Graduate Teaching and Learning Program and programming related to the Academic Integrity and Ethics Training Requirement-- a role to which she brings sixteen years of teaching experience in the post-secondary environment. Deanna is a certified coach and Serious Lego Play facilitator.

Register for the workshop