One of the most important factors that contribute to your success in graduate school is the relationship with your advisor. As the mentee, it is your responsibility to be the driver of this relationship, and to engage with your mentor to establish mutual expectations for your graduate training. The Individual Development Plan is a very effective tool to start these conversations with your advisor.
The following are core skills for being an activate participant in your mentoring relationship with your advisor (also known as "mentoring up", reproduced with permission, full article found here:Mentoring Up: Learning to Manage Your Mentoring Relationships).
1. Maintaining Effective Communication
2. Aligning Expectations
3. Assessing Understanding
4. Addressing Equity and Inclusion
5. Fostering Independence
6. Promoting Professional Development
Building a network of local, national, and international mentors and peers will aid in your professional development and open doors to diverse opportunities for collaborations and future careers. There are many ways you can increase your network, including by joining student groups, departmental or university committees, and professional societies. If possible, try to attend conferences appropriate for those in your field, and seek out collaborations.
The National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity (NCFDD) hosts this webinar for more networking information:
Informational interviews are an excellent way to explore diverse career paths. These outlines and guides may be helpful:
Graduate students interested in international networking, research, and/or engagement may find helpful resources through UF’s International Center (UFIC).
Attending and participating in conferences, seminars, and department events is an important part of your training in graduate school. Your advisor, mentor(s), or graduate coordinator can help you identify upcoming conferences and opportunities. Other resources exist to help you in developing professional etiquette:
Adhering to social norms and/or professional conduct in your department, university, and professional field will help build a positive professional reputation. Several resources exist to help you identify and adhere to academic social norms and professional conduct.
Social media has revolutionized academia as much as any industry. In a recent study conducted by Luc et al. (2020), it was found that journal articles that were discussed on Twitter had, on average, three times the number of citations than journal articles not discussed on Twitter. Developing a social media presence as an emerging scholar helps individuals to network, create collaborations, and bring attention to their research and publications. Resources include:
Here’s a guide on how to follow professional behavior (adapted from Practicing Professionalism: A Graduate Student Guide):
Email and Communication
Academic Honesty & Plagiarism
Tips for Getting the Most out of your Graduate Program
|Semester||Workshop Title||Presenter||Recordings, Transcripts, and Materials|
|Fall 2022||Considerations When Making Employment Decisions||Dr. Martie Gillen (IFAS)|
|Fall 2021||How to Train Your Advisor||Jeremy Waisome, PhD, College of Engineering|
|Spring 2021||Making the Most of Conferences||Jaime Harsell, Career Connections Center|
|Fall 2019||Graduate Funding Opportunities with the UF Center for European Studies||Corinne Tomasi, Center for European Studies||European Studies Funding Workshop Recording|
|Fall 2019||Maximize Your Mentoring Relationships in Graduate School||Dr. Linda Searby, College of Education||Mentoring Relationships Workshop Recording|
|Fall 2019||What You Need Before You Proceed: Finding and Filling the Gaps in Your Academic Training||Dr. Scott Thourson, NeuroProstheses Research Lab||Filling the Gaps Workshop Recording|
|Spring 2019||Networking and Building Professional Connections for Graduate Students||Allie Simon, Career Connections Center||Networking Workshop Recording|
|Spring 2019||Scholars Speaking to the Public in the Age of Internet Noise||Dr. Kevin M. Folta, Horticultural Sciences||Scholars Speaking Workshop Recording|
|Course Title||Course Number||Department||Course Description||Instructor|
|Leadership Development for Extension and Community Nonprofit Organizations||AEC 5454||Agricultural Education & Communication||Application of concepts related to developing leaders for organizing and maintaining extension and community nonprofit organizations.|
|Development of a Volunteer Leadership Program||AEC 6426||Agricultural Education & Communication||Identification, recruitment, training, retention, and supervision of volunteer leaders.|
|Graduate Student Professional Development||ALS 5934||Environmental Horticulture||Presentations and group discussion of topics essential to enhance awareness, personal satisfaction, and professional success of graduate students||Hector Perez|
|International Research Immersion course||ALS 5905||Agroecology|
|Mentoring for Career Development||EDA 6370||Education||Assists graduate students in their careers in any field through the discovery of how mentoring, a commonly accepted support structure in business, industry, medicine, and academia, can enhance their professional development. In addition, students will gain knowledge to become mentors or lead mentoring programs.||Linda Searby|