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Mentorship program goes public at brown bags

High anticipation for UCOP’s new Mentorship Program was in evidence at its official public kickoff Feb. 23 in the Franklin building and again March 1 at the Kaiser building. VP Dwaine Duckett hosted brown bag presentations and answered questions, exploring the opportunities the new staff development program will offer.

Workers everywhere are demanding this type of program more than any other, Duckett said, as a way to build “valuable professional relationships that last a lifetime.” In the UCOP work environment, he said, where people connect primarily with their floor mates or immediate work group, the program will promote cross-fertilization and reveal hidden talent across functions, departments and job levels, to benefit the entire community.

Among the 25 attendees at the Franklin building session were prospective mentors and mentees, steering committee members and human resources staff working on the program.

Mary Croughan, UCOP Research Grants Program executive director and a steering committee member, said she is still in touch with everyone she has ever mentored over the past 23 years at UCSF, where she developed a faculty mentorship program eight years ago.

“I never had a mentee relationship end,” Croughan said. “It just morphs into something different.” She said that mentorship programs are positive recruitment tools for employees. “People want to work at places that have strong mentorship programs.” Existing mentorship programs at UCSF and UC Berkeley are serving as models for UCOP.

Mentee applications are due by 5 p.m., Friday, March 11. Because of the pilot nature of the program’s inaugural year, not everyone will be accepted. But the goal is to learn lessons and, in future years, expand the program to accommodate all those interested in participating.

Program guidelines, the mentee application form and more details can be found at

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