Leadership Programs

Programs & Seminars
Advancing Women Mentoring Program

Registration is closed for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Prior to registration, mentees must review mentor biographies and select 3-5 mentors they would be interested in working with this year. We will do all that we can to accommodate mentee requests, but being assigned to your top choice is not always possible.

Mentor bios
  • Corinne Patterson

    About me: I started working in the Office of Student Involvement as the Coordinator for Leadership Programs in August 2015. I moved to Indy just over a year ago to fulfill an AmeriCorps term of service with Public Allies Indianapolis. Prior to my move, I was a student at the University of Cincinnati for six years where I earned a BA in English and a BA/MA in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. I was heavily involved in the Women's Center, LGBTQ Center, and Racial Awareness Program (RAPP) during my time as a student at UC. I am personally and professionally committed to inclusive leadership development, social justice, and community building. In my free time I like to Jazzercise, try new restaurants, and go to spoken word events throughout the city (s/o to shehive and Localmotion).

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I have navigated a lot of transitions in the past five years, whether it was from an undergraduate to a grad student role, into an AmeriCorps position in a brand new city, and, now, as a new (and young! and queer!) professional in higher ed, and I know those experiences speak to a lot of students. I believe deeply in the importance of mentor relationships for both parties involved, and it is so incredibly important to have a network of mentors to call on as you navigate all that the universe throws at you. The formal and informal mentor relationships I've developed over the years have been crucial to my happiness and success and I am excited about the possibility of creating new ones at IUPUI.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Mentorship should be, at its core, a reciprocal relationship. I am certain that whoever I'm matched with will have as much to offer me as I do them (if not more).

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Volunteerism, Outdoor Activities, Reading, Family & Friends, cats

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: social justice, civic engagement, inclusive leadership, social change model of leadership development, feminist theory, queer theory

  • Nerissa Bauer

    About me: I am an assistant professor of pediatrics with the School of Medicine. I am also a behavioral pediatrician and health services researcher. I am also the fellowship director of children's health services research program. I also serve as an executive committee member for the American Academy of Pediatrics and liaison to the Committee of Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health. I have held numerous leadership positions for national organizations related to my specialty. My research interests are in positive parenting, early childhood and systems-level interventions for helping general pediatricians identify and manage maternal depression and common childhood behavior issues (such as ADHD, anxiety). I also am on the Board at a local preschool, St. Mary's Child Center.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I believe it is important to have other women be a part of mentoring in all facets of their lives. Someone who understands the struggles of academia, balancing work-life and career. It is important to engage women in meaningful experiences with others who wish to help connect others and share their own experiences.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I would like to be able to use skills learned through the office of women's advancement and apply them to my mentoring of the fellows we have in our program. Moreover, I find it energizing to meet other women in different stages of their career so we can support all women on campus.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Volunteerism, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: pediatrics, health services research, medicine

  • Regina Marshall

    About me: I currently work in the department of Athletics. I am the Assistant AD for Fiscal Affairs and enjoy working with the coaches and student athletes. I would rather do math, then read or write.
    I am a part of the Victory Tabernacle Youth Committee, and we are always planning events for the youth. I am heavily involved in my church and that is the main reason I am still in Indianapolis.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: You never know who you can help, and who can help make yours better.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Working relationship with both the Advancing Women Mentoring Program and the mentee.

    Personal Interests: Music, Volunteerism, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Accounting/Finance/Human Resources

  • Sheila Summers

    About me: I am an administrative assistant in the Office of Student Involvement. I am interested in the arts, travel, literature, nature. I also teach ballet and contemporary dance to advanced dance students.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I am the mother of three daughters and I work with young women through my ballet classes. I think it is critical to impart to women of all ages that they are important, capable and limitless.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I enjoy learning from all interactions and I hope to become more aware of my own shortcomings when relating with people, and then improve and strengthen those weaknesses.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Music, Movies, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends, Science and medicine and animal science

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: I like careers with a variety of duties and challenges. I have found that whether I'm waitressing, working in an office environment, teaching or handling customer service issues, it all comes down to paying attention to the person you are relating to at that time. Although my career has gone in an irregular pattern I have truly enjoyed each path at that time.

  • Mansi R. Singh

    About me: Mansi R. Singh is the Communication Manager for the Office of Community Engagement (OCE). Her current responsibilities include brand management; website management; serving as the point person for all communication, marketing and public relations efforts; providing abetment for event management; and is the social media lead.
    Her past experiences include serving in a communication role with the Center for Service and Learning where she managed communications as well as co-planned the annual Robert G. Bringle Civic Engagement Showcase and Symposium and co-lead planning for the IUPUI William M. Plater Civic Engagement Medallion award; was the Program Director for CSL Project and Communication Assistant Scholars; managed CSL’s web presence in form of the website, social media accounts and electronic posts/press releases.
    A native of the IUPUI community, Mansi holds double degrees in Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Students from the Indiana University-Purdue University of Indianapolis. Other professional commitments include: Member of Selection Committee for Sam H. Jones Community Service Scholarships; Staff Advisor for IUPUI Foodies Guild; Member of Staff council on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; Member for IUPUI Marketers; Mentor in the Advancing Women Mentoring Program; Member of Selection Committee for IUPUI Student Employee and Employer of the Year; Member of Selection Committee for IUPUI Nan Bohan Community Engagement Staff Award.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: To support a mentee in their professional development as well as hone on my interpersonal skills.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: An opportunity to learn about a student's goals/aspirations and assist in creating a meaningful campus experience for them.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Volunteerism, Family & Friends, Reading, Travel, Outdoor Activities

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Communication; Public Relations; Diversity in the Workplace; Organizational Strategies; Web content management; Email Marketing; Mediation; Newsletters

  • Shawnte Elbert

    About me: Shawnte (Shawn-tae) attended East Carolina University where she majored in Health Education and Promotion with a concentration in Worksite Health. She received her Master of Arts degree in Wellness from Chatham University. Shawnté has been a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) since 2007 and a Tobacco Treatment Specialist (TTS) since 2012. She was a Graduate Assistant for East Carolina University-Student Health Services for a year and half before being hired as the Health Educator, a position she held for over five and a half years. While at East Carolina, she also served as the Assistant Director of Greek Life for 10 months for the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) and the Multicultural Greek Council.
    After East Carolina, she worked at UNC Charlotte - Center for Wellness Promotion, as the Health Educator for Alcohol, Tobacco, Drugs and General Health. Shawnte also ran a successful Tobacco Cessation clinic for students while serving as a site supervisor for graduate and undergraduate Interns, co-advised the two Peer Education groups. Shawnté also served as an Adjunct Instructor teaching a Peer Health and health/wellness courses for Central Piedmont Community College, Kaplan University and University of Phoenix.
    Additionally, she has mentored dozens of students and professionals over her career. Working in higher education is not a job for her, it’s her passion and ministry.
    “Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know” ~ Pema Chodron
    Why I want to serve as a mentor: To offer the skills and wisdom gained over "life experiences". I have served as a mentor for the past 8 years at previous institutions.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Connecting with an IUPUI student, where the mentoring relationship can be mutually beneficial.

    Personal Interests: Family & Friends, Reading, Volunteerism, Movies, Music

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Public Health (Corporate and College Health specialization); Leadership Development, Mentoring

    Additional information: I love to laugh and working with students. It's my passion and ministry.

  • Erika Cheng

    About me: I am an assistant professor in the department of pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine with research interests in lifecourse epidemiology, health services, and maternal and child health.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I am eager to give back to the academic community. I credit much of my academic and career success to strong mentorship - I believe it's important to carry that wisdom forward to the next generation of research scientists and women academics.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I think this would be a rewarding experience and I hope to gain skills useful for effective mentoring through the workshops offered by the program.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Sports, Working Out, Outdoor Activities, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Maternal and child health, lifecourse epidemiology, health services research

  • Mahri Irvine

    About me: I am an anthropologist who studies gender-based violence and cultural inequalities in the United States. I work for the Indiana University system as the Statewide Sexual Assault Education and Prevention Specialist; currently, I am conducting applied research in the form of needs and strengths assessments for the six IU regional campuses. I am also employed as an Adjunct Professorial Lecturer at American University; I design and teach online classes focusing on gender and violence.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: As a student and a professional, I've had many wonderful mentors who have been fantastic role models. I would be pleased to have the chance to try to be like my own mentors -- I would enjoy working with students to help give them guidance or advice about their career goals or academic plans.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I would love to help students identify their priorities and create realistic strategies for reaching their goals, while making sure that they're developing healthy work-life balance.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Volunteerism, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Gender-based violence prevention, response, and education.

    Applied anthropology -- using social science methods and theories to help people in the "real world" outside of academia.

  • Katrina Patterson

    About me: I am the Administrative Recorder for the School of Social Work. I have been employed here for 18 years now. I also attend school part time. I have self-published two children's books and working on my third book. I have a strong interest in Art. As a child I loved everything about Art, drawing, painting, photography. I am now taking Art classes and tapping back into my love for Art. I am a member of the National Federation of the Blind which is an organization that my brother who is legally blind is actively involved in. Several years ago I started a program for my teen daughter called the Circle of Life. The program was created in order to help my shy daughter meet other girls her age with similar interest. We did weekly activities such as horseback riding, skating, went to the Rodeo, restaurants had resume writing workshops and had speakers come to talk about self-love and making positive choices. My daughter young ladies who are now lifelong friends.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I want to serve as a mentor because I want to encourage young people to make positive choices and believe in themselves. There are so many negatives influences but I believe one small act of kindness can change a person’s life. Life is good and goals can be met if you work hard, make good choices, help others, believe and surround yourself with positive, encouraging people.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Music, Working Out, Movies, Volunteerism, Shopping, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends, Arts, Dancing, Writing

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: I interested in eventually pursuing a degree in Social Work. I would like to work with children and teens.

  • Lauren Pena

    About me: I first learned about IUPUI when I attended law school at the IU McKinney School of Law. Following Law School, I remained on campus and now serve as the admissions advisor to the IU McKinney School of Law. As I have been on this campus for a total of 5 years now I have transitioned my career goals from corporate law into education law or higher education administration. Outside of my professional life I serve as a mentor to the Beyond the Woods Program, am a Young Alumni Board Member to Indiana Wesleyan University, a member of the Young Professionals of Indianapolis and am actively apart of the Dwell Downtown Indy Group. I enjoy all of the amenities downtown and you can usually find me at some the local music venues or coffee shops.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I want to serve as a mentor because I believe it is important to have someone you can talk to who will provide you with leadership and guidance when making life's difficult decisions. In my experiences I have had mentors that have helped me to shape my future and hope to provide that to other young individuals as well.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: From this experience I hope to see how the world is developing for young women. While I am still in my late 20's its has been 5+ years since I was in undergrad, I am hoping to glean from my mentee their ideas and their viewpoints on how the world should act and how we as women can affect change. Finally, I am hoping to provide some experience and lessons learned to others who are facing career or cultural obstacles in their futures.

    Personal Interests: Sports, Music, Volunteerism, Shopping, Travel, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Higher Education, Law or Business

  • Allison Barkel

    About me: I am the Coordinator for Student Success and Outreach in the Office of Educational Partnerships and Student Advocacy at IUPUI. I have my bachelors in Management with a minor in Communication. I graduated with my master's in Higher Education and Student Affairs from IU in May 2015. I am involved in Girls Inc. Indianapolis that seeks to empower K-12 girls to be strong, smart and bold. I am specifically interested in higher education, organizational change and women in leadership.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I want to serve as a mentor because I believe it is crucial that we provide mentorship to other women because so often women lack a role model in the workforce which disadvantages them from pursuing and obtaining leadership roles. As a young professional I would like to have a mutual relationship of learning and growth with my mentee.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I am hoping to pay it forward. I have had several mentors that have really challenged and motivated me to pursue opportunities and grow. Now that I am a professional, I want to pay it forward and provide that support for another young woman.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Movies, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Higher Education, Management, Organization Development and Change 

  • Coretta King

    About me: I am a jack of trades. I spent parts of my career tenure in Corporate America (Aflac, Inc) in Training, Residence Life and Student Counseling in Georgia/South Carolina, and now Leadership Programs here at IUPUI. I enjoy advocating for students and offering opportunities for students, staff, and community persons. I am committed to enhancing the quality of life for all.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I have been mentoring since my early college days of undergraduate studies and thoroughly enjoy the experience. It is a great opportunity to share stories, experiences, wisdom, and to learn from one another.
    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I hope to be able to assist an IUPUI student in their future endeavors by providing a listening ear, any solicited development focus, and having fun.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Sports, Music, Working Out, Movies, Volunteerism, Shopping, Travel, Reading, Family & Friend

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Leadership, Business/Management, Wellness/Life Balance, Student Affairs/Student Services

    Additional information: I am a native Georgian who has live abroad and always open to new experiences.

  • Karen White

    About me: I do a lot of work with students, especially related to innovation and entrepreneurial skills

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: Women in scientific/technical fields may not be aware of some of the paths available

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I enjoyed the experience last time.

    Personal Interests: Music, Movies, Reading

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Entrepreneurship and innovation, intellectual property

  • Johannah Casey-Doecke

    About me: I've been teaching at IUPUI since 1986 for the Department of Kinesiology. I enjoy helping women who want to be Sport Coaches and connect with their governing Federation.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I was a Pioneer during a time when women were unwelcome in my profession. It's very rewarding for me to see this generation of women thrive professionally.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Just the wonderful feeling I get when I see a young woman succeed.

    Personal Interests: Sports, Volunteerism, Shopping, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends, Raising Golden Retrievers

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Teaching Personal Health and Sport in America

    Additional information: My best mentoring skill is helping young women incorporate the things they love to do into their future career.

  • Sharmin Taylor

    About me: I am an Office Manager for Indiana University School of Medicine, Office of Graduate Medical Education where I serve as the liaison for diversity and for the URM (Underrepresented in Medicine) Mentor/Mentee Program. I have over 20 years of experience working in the healthcare industry. I have an extensive background in healthcare administration and finance. In addition to holding various certifications. I have a Bronze Lean Certification which has prepared her to serve as a project leader for high level projects. Additionally, I work at IUPUI as an adjunct faculty in the Office of Community Engagement teaching, Patient Access, Medical Administrative Assistant, and Healthcare Administration Certificate Programs. I love creating an inviting environment that allows learners to bring real world examples into classroom conversations. My enthusiasm for working with diverse learners in the community is evident as I was featured on the front cover of the 2015 winter edition of the IUPUI Embrace Diversity Magazine.

    I am a Diversity Round Table of Central Indiana Board Member, IUPUI Norman Brown Diversity and Leadership Scholar Mentor, I am a Dress for Success Volunteer.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I want to serve as a mentor to allow young women to see their potential, to be a resource, and to help young women grow professionally

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I'm hoping to gain a lifelong relationship. Also this will help me to develop as a leader.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Sports, Working Out, Volunteerism, Family & Friends, Career Development

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Medical Education, Finance, Healthcare Administration, Medical Terminology, Billing and Insurance

    Additional information: I have a passion for working with economically and educationally disadvantaged individuals.

  • Anne Mitchell

    About me: Director of Survey Research Office (Planning and Institutional Improvement)
    Associate Faculty, Department of Sociology (School of Liberal Arts)
    Executive Committee, LGBTQ Faculty/Staff Council
    Faculty Advisor, LGBTQ Student Alliance

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I think mentor programs are important.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Relationship building

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Sports, Music, Movies, Volunteerism, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: research methodology, data collection techniques, improving higher education, sociology of education, gender/sexuality, race/ethnicity

    Additional information: I am divorced and have children. My personal interests include: sports, sport talk radio, my kids/legos/watching the Lego Movie 500 times, my animals, Scandal, hanging out with my girlfriend

  • Theresa Rohr-Kirchgraber

    About me: Theresa Rohr-Kirchgraber, MD is an Associate Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics Executive Director, IU National Center of Excellence in Women’s Health Chief Physician Executive, Eskenazi Health Outpatient Care Center Primary Care and the Center of Excellence for Women’s Health Sound Medicine, National Public Radio, Health and Wellness Expert. Born and raised in Southern California she completed her education at California State University Long Beach-BA Chemistry Attended Cornell University College of Medicine and her residency in Internal Medicine was completed at University Hospitals of Cleveland Board Certified in Adolescent and Internal Medicine. She focuses on Primary Care, Care of Childhood Cancer Survivors, Eating Disorders in Adults, and Health and Wellness Publications

    Rohr-Kirchgraber T, Rouse, M Eating Disorders, Handbook of Women’s Health, ACP, 2009, 449-455.
    Welch, J, Rohr-Kirchgraber T., Gender Diversity Milestones in Medicine, Reflections IUSM http://medicine.iu.edu/sig/cat/files/4213/4483/1083/Reflections_8-11-12.pdf
    Rohr-Kirchgraber T., “These Muscle Cramps Are Holding Me Back!” A 14-Year-Old Star Basketball Player With Muscle Cramps, Adolescent Med 23 (2012) 307–312
    Rohr-Kirchgraber T., Nabhan Z. M., New Rash Adolescent Med 23 (2012) 319–325
    Rohr-Kirchgraber T., Multiple Visits for Abdominal Pain, Constipation, and “I need a test for sexually transmitted diseases” Adolescent Med 23 (2012) 313–318

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I enjoy being helpful to potential colleagues!

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: Successful students.

    Personal Interests: Sports, Working Out, Travel, Reading

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Internal Medicine/Adolescent Medicine

    Additional information: Married, 3 kids, enjoying life.

  • Rebecca Stout

    About me: I am a Assistant Clinical Professor for the Radiography program. I am active in my state and local professional socialites. I am currently entertaining the idea of returning to school myself. Learning is lifelong and I enjoy learning new things.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I believe true success is having the right people in the right place throughout the training/learning process. Having someone in your corner allows for so many possibilities.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I want to help young women grow as a student and as a professional. I always learn myself along the way to. Not only teach and guide them, but I hope to gain some knowledge or life experience from them as well.

    Personal Interests: Sports, Working Out, Shopping, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: I am a Radiographer by trade. I also did CT was well. I teach Patient Care, Radiology Procedures, and I also have clinical responsibility at Eskenazi.

  • Niki Messmore

    About me: Greetings, awesome IUPUI students!

    My name is Niki Messmore and I have been the Coordinator for Community Service & Civic Engagement within the Office of Student Involvement at IUPUI since July 2014. As you consider who may match up best as a mentor for you, check out my story below and also feel free to reach out to me on Twitter at @NikiMessmore.

    Education:

    • Bowling Green State University, Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, 2007
      • Student organizations that I participated in: Undergraduate Student Government, Latino Student Union, Residence Hall Association, Hall Council, Frieda Falcon (mascot) / plus I worked as a Resident Advisor (RA), Orientation Leader, teaching assistant, and more
      • Indiana University, Masters of Science in Higher Education & Student Affairs, 2014

    Work History:

    • IUPUI; Coordinator for Community Service & Civic Engagement (July 2014 – present)
    • Indiana University, Graduate Assistant for the Community Leadership & Development Center (July 2012 – May 2014)
      • Adelante, the Latino Resource Center; Special Projects Coordinator (August 2011 – June 2012)
      • The United Way of Greater Toledo; Call to Action Coordinator (March 2010 – June 2011)
      • Direct Action Research Center (DART); Community Organizer (July 2009 – November 2009)
      • Teen Central; Director (August 2007 – June 2009)

    About Me:

    I grew up in a low-income household and was a first-generation college student (aka the first in my family to go to college). Education has been key to my success, but understanding how to navigate college did not come easily. I am fortunate that I had wonderful faculty and staff members at Bowling Green who mentored me, and for the nonprofit and higher education professionals who took the time to mentor me throughout my career. Research tells us that the #1 way for someone to get out of poverty is having a mentor; and I can speak personally to this. I think it is critical that people of all ages, but especially younger people, have a mentor – and that is why I would like to be a mentor for the Advancing Women Mentoring Program.

    Interests:

    I’m a geek. I can talk all day about my favorite films, tv shows, and comics/books. My Triumvirate of Awesome are: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Lord of the Rings, & Supernatural. I love Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder, Grey’s Anatomy (SHONDA!), Empire, Jane the Virgin, The 100, The Vampire Diaries, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Mindy Project, and more. When it comes to music, I range from classic, 90s, and current rock, to reggaeton, salsa, and bachata; to pop, classical, bhangra, hip-hop, and more – the only genre I don’t listen to is country. When it comes to comics, I prefer the progressive comics that prominently feature women, people of color, and queer characters – The Wicked & the Divine, Ms. Marvel, Lumberjanes, and more.

    Social justice and working towards equity is very important to me; and I’m deeply appreciative of the work of activists online who create awareness and action events. As someone deeply invested in doing my part to make the world a better place, I like to stay on top of current events and social issues. The social issues I care the most about are youth/education, poverty, mental illness, the DREAM Act, and fighting discrimination (re: race, sexuality, gender, and more). I have been involved in activist work throughout my adult life and firmly believe that everyone should get involved in their communities through becoming educated on issues and then taking action to create change.

    Career Goals:

    I worked in nonprofit management before moving to work in higher education.  My career goals are varied and require continued contemplation. I am interested in pursuing an additional master’s degree (like SPEA or social work) or a PhD (education). In the future, I can imagine myself as a faculty member, consultant/trainer/speaker, director of a nonprofit agency, and many other areas. Primarily, my career goals revolve around education, social work, and nonprofit management. Hopefully it provides solace to the undergraduate students reading this that someone can be 30 years old and still not sure what their future looks like! :)

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I grew up in a low-income household and was a first-generation college student (aka the first in my family to go to college). Education has been key to my success, but understanding how to navigate college did not come easily. I am fortunate that I had wonderful faculty and staff members at Bowling Green who mentored me, and for the nonprofit and higher education professionals who took the time to mentor me throughout my career. Research tells us that the #1 way for someone to get out of poverty is having a mentor; and I can speak personally to this. I think it is critical that people of all ages, but especially younger people, have a mentor – and that is why I would like to be a mentor for the Advancing Women Mentoring Program. I think it is critical that society especially take time to mentor students with minoritized identities (race, gender, sexuality, religion, etc) because there are so many barriers in society that career advising, etc require nuanced dialogue on the topic.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I am hoping to gain the opportunity to give back, due to the own mentors and successful opportunities that I had growing up, during my college years, and as a professional. It is especially important to me that I support the mentorship of women, especially recognizing the role of intersecting identities and how they shape the world around us and our life experiences. I learned, sometimes the hard way, that I will be treated differently due to my marginalized identities. That’s a tough learning curve and trying to figure out how to navigate it by myself hasn’t always been easy; I thrived more when I had mentors to guide me – even if a lot of my learning came from observing them and learning what they did to be successful. Additionally, I thoroughly enjoy mentoring individuals and building relationships with people. I am soon to be a mentor in the NASPA (student affairs organization) NUFP program (https://www.naspa.org/constituent-groups/professionals/nufp) to mentor a student here at IUPUI as she considers a career in student affairs. I thought deeply on if I could manage two official mentees in addition to my unofficial mentees (aka the students I directly and indirectly advise) and I believe I am ready for this commitment.

    Personal Interests:

    Career interests/Areas of specialization:

    • Nonprofit management/ Social services
    • Marketing/social media
    • Student Affairs and Higher Education
    • Community Service & Civic engagement

    Additional information: Cultural Events, Music, Movies, Volunteerism, Shopping, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

  • Melissa Buller

    About me: I am an associate director of The Fund Raising School, a program of the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy. I am passionate about the potential of the nonprofit sector's history of and potential for solving complex social issues. I am a member of my church's board of directors, love the outdoors, music, and Zumba.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I have been fortunate to have strong women role models throughout the course of my life. Because of them, I had the confidence to pursue an advanced education. They inspired me to travel the world and develop and insatiable curiosity. I would like to share that enthusiasm for living.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I hope to fulfill a need to express a sense of gratitude for all the women who paved they way for me and others to pursue our education, social, and career aspirations.

    Personal Interests: Cultural Events, Music, Working Out, Movies, Volunteerism, Outdoor Activities, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Marketing, communications, business management

  • Amy Jones Richardson

    About me: I enjoy being both a full-time student services staff member at IUPUI (Liberal Arts, Student Affairs) and a part-time graduate student (Philanthropic Studies MA). Learning keeps me challenged and enthusiastic, so taking classes is one of my 'hobbies.' For a very long time, I served as the scholarship manager for Liberal Arts and the recruiter/community outreach person (I still play a role with both, but we've developed them into full-time positions). Now, my professional focus is on student retention/graduation and co-curricular learning (I advise our Student Council and am a resource for about our other 20+ organizations). And I do a lot of data analysis.

    I studied Spanish from elementary school through college (even though my major was Government), studied abroad in Seville, Spain, then after graduation served in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica and Ecuador. I care deeply about issues that impact our Latino community - students and families. I'm been involved with META (a program held here at IUPUI ) that brings about 400 latino high school students to campus each year to focus on education and careers.

    Diversity and inclusion are key passions for me. Maybe because my sister is handicapable (her word), or because my brother is Native American (we adopted him when he was young), or because as part of a military family we moved frequently throughout the U.S., or because I attended a women's college as a middle class first-generation student at the peak of the women's liberation movement... all of these factors cause me to care about whether we (me, my office, my school, my campus, my community, my church) are inclusive and open and supportive. Through my work at IUPUI I've been able to participate in workshops, committees and programs dedicated to diversity, understanding and social justice. This matters deeply to me.

    One of my goals is to be an advocate for fairness and flexibility, to removing barriers and hierarchies that prevent individuals and groups from achieving their goals. I involve myself with committees and task forces and groups on campus and in the community that I think share that purpose.

    I enjoy time camping/at a lake, reading, reflecting, attending cultural events. I love long conversations about life.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: IUPUI is my home/family away from home; I think family members should mentor each other. I like connecting people to opportunities. Interactions with students keep me aware of issues and impact of our institution on them as individuals. I've been on campus long enough and with enough curiosity that I think I can provide some useful, relevant suggestions to a mentee - and I expect to learn a lot from them, too.

    What I am hoping to gain from the experience: Some fresh perspectives. A way of getting to know someone I might not otherwise have met and an opportunity to be supportive of their efforts.

    Personal interests: Cultural Events, Volunteerism, Travel, Reading, Family & Friends

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Student services (recruitment, scholarship, undergraduate research, diversity/inclusion, cocurricular activities/programming, leadership, social justice, financial literacy, enrollment data/analysis). Liberal Arts. Foreign Language/Spanish.

    Additional information: My schedule is erratic. I am on campus a lot and can be available in the evenings most of Mon-Fri. Weekends will be more challenging. I attract clutter and last minute flurries of activity. My office and my schedule often change at the last minute, but I try to let people know of the changes as needed.(My schedule is on my door and I keep an on-line calendar.) I disclose this up front, because I mean no disrespect but have a very difficult time being focused on 'time'/'structure'.

  • Sherry Steingass

    About me: I moved to Indianapolis in 2009 from a small town in Northwest Ohio. At that time I was the Administrative Specialist for the Office of Student Involvement. In January of 2015 I earned the position of Business Manager in the Office of Student Involvement.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: I feel I have a lot of experience and would like to share what I have learned from those experiences. I was a non-traditional student and after 10 years earned my Bachelor’s Degree in May of 2015. I lived in a small town my entire life and decided there was more to life than what I was doing. So I moved to Indianapolis by myself, not knowing anyone here.  I have been a dental assistant, medical transcriptionist, office manager, and retail store assistant manager. I’m also the mother of 3 adult children and I have 3 grandchildren.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: I enjoy talking to students and learning about their lives. Students are full of ideas and knowledge and while I hope to pass some of my knowledge onto them, I anticipate learning much from them.

    Personal Interests: Watching sports, reading, walking, riding my bike, music

    Career interests/Areas of specialization: Business/Management/Finance. My dream job would be working with cancer patients. 

  • Andrea Engler

    About me: I have been in higher education for 19 years, am a 2005 Bryn Mawr Women's Summer Institute Alumna, a wife and mom of four children, and have completed my Ed.D in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies. I have spent my career building and developing mentoring programs, training mentors and developing students. I have always valued the mentors in my life and passionately serve as a mentor to others.

    Why I want to serve as a mentor: As my professional responsibilities have grown and broadened over the years, I have decreased my direct mentoring of undergraduate students. Instead, I have found myself serving a mentor to peer professionals and specifically to women looking for encouragement and direction about issues such as work/life balance, continuing their education, making career movement decisions, conflict resolution with situations in their life, and parenting. As a more seasoned woman at this point in my life, I would like to participate in this program as a formal way to support women on their journey in work and life.

    What I am hoping to gain from this experience: While it is not extensive in the literature, anecdotally and personally, I know that mentors gain just as much and often more from mentoring others than what the mentees receives. From this experience, I will look forward to supporting the lives of other women, gaining a better understanding of myself, and having the opportunity to be reflective about my own journey personally and professionally.

    Personal interests: Friends & Family, Outdoor Activities, Working Out

    Career interests/Area of specialization: My career/areas of specialization include curriculum design, program development and assessment, promoting transformational learning experiences, mentoring others and teaching.

     

    Additional information: I live by seeking to understand and supporting others on their journey.

Information for Mentees
  • Who can particiate as a mentee?

    Any undergraduate student currently enrolled in IUPUI with an interest in the topic is invited to participate. First year, second year, and transfer students may find this program most beneficial.

    How can I benefit from this program?

    •  Increased awareness of campus resources at IUPUI.
    • Opportunity to collaborate with faculty and staff on the IUPUI campus.
    • Building community and networking with other mentees/mentors who are part of the program.
    • Development of leadership skills such as communication strategies, goal setting, time management, and leading with confidence.
    • Development of personal vision and career aspirations.
    • Discovery and reflection on personal strengths through assessment.
  • How will I be matched with my mentor/mentee?

    Great question. All mentors (IUPUI Faculty/Staff) will be asked to complete a brief biography about themselves. These bios will be posted to the Advancing Women Mentoring Program website. Prior to registration, please review these bios. When you register for the program, please select a few mentors you would be interested in being paired with. We will do our best to accommodate your requests. You will be notified about your mentor prior to the September kickoff.

  • What happens if my mentor/mentee pairing does not work out?

    While it is our hope that all mentor/mentee pairings are good fits, we understand that there may be circumstances where a pairing does not work out. If this is the case, a mentor or mentee should contact either of the Office of Student Involvement or the Office for Women.

  • What kinds of topics will be covered?
    • Educational and career-related goal setting
    • Exploration of personal strengths
    • Communication strategies including understanding variances in communication styles among men and women, communication skills, and proper etiquette
    • Leadership Development
    • Time management and creating a positive work/life balance
    • Presenting yourself professionally
    • Developing confidence and ambition
    • Gender equality in higher education and the workplace
  • How does addressing the above topics relate to the idea of "Advancing Women"?

    One purpose of this program is to educate participants about various topics such as gender roles, inequality, and women in culture and society. However, simply increasing one's awareness is not enough. However the other purpose of this program is to provide students with the tools necessary to be successful in their personal, academic, and professional lives. It is our hope that by developing things such as leadership, communication, and career skills in addition to confidence and ambition, participants become empowered to respond to these issues.

  • What's the time commitment?

    Both mentors and mentees will need to be able to attend the kick-off event where they will meet with their potential mentee/mentor pairings. How frequently you meet throughout the school year is up to each mentor/mentee. We recommend that you consider meeting at least once every few weeks. Setting up a regular breakfast or lunch meeting is a great way to plan around schedules and develop a routine pattern of meeting together. In addition, mentors/mentees are highly encouraged to attend programming and events offered by the Office for Women at various points throughout the year.

  • What is my role?

    As a mentee, your role is to be an active participant in the program by regularly meeting with your mentor and by engaging in the program. It is also important that you know the role of your mentor. Mentors are not substitute parents or licensed psychologists. They are also not expected to be an expert on your major or intended career. However, mentors are there to guide you by offering advice and suggestions. Furthermore, we expect both mentors and mentees to be authentic in their meetings with each other meaning that both should be honest, real, and genuine in their engagement.

  • Is the program only for women students?

    No. While the content of the program specifically addresses issues pertaining to the advancement of women, it is open to all students, faculty, and staff with an interest in the topic.