Since its inception in 2007, 29 MITs (out of 40 applicants) were selected to participate in the UCSF CTSI Mentor Development Program and 26 (90%) completed the program. Of those who completed the program, 46% were female, 77% white, most held an MD degree (64%) and were in the School of Medicine (81%) (). The majority of MITs were at the Associate Professor rank (58%), nearly three quarters reported that they spent at least 50% of their time engaged in research, and most were primarily performing clinical or health services research (85%). Few MITs reported any previous mentor training (15%).
Baseline Characteristics of UCSF Mentors-in-Training 2007–08 (N = 26)
Most MITs felt that the MDP had a significant impact on their mentoring skills (). For example, 96% agreed that the program helped them to become a better mentor, and 92% agreed that it had enhanced their understanding of mentoring issues at UCSF. One MIT said: “I have more knowledge about UCSF policies and procedures so I can better help my mentees.” Another MIT wrote: “The MDP answered not only the questions I knew to ask but also the questions I didn’t know to ask! This is an essential [program] that every mentor needs to complete.”
Overall assessment of MDP Impact on Mentoring Skills (N = 26)
In addition, we found a marked improvement from the pre-to-post MDP surveys in overall importance of being a mentor to career satisfaction (mean pre-MDP agreement score 1.4 (+− 0.5) to mean post-MDP score 4.8 (+−0.4) P<0.001) and overall confidence in mentoring skills (mean pre-MDP agreement score 2.2 (+−0.5) to post-MDP score 4.2 (+−0.5) P<0.001. This increase in confidence is illustrated by one MIT who commented in the post-MDP survey: “I will use what I learned in this [program] to focus my mentoring, allowing me to better choose my mentees and to be a more effective mentor to them.”
demonstrates the change in MIT confidence in their specific mentoring skills from the baseline pre-MDP survey to completion of the MDP program. After completion of the program, the MITs significantly improved in their confidence in mentoring skills in all items (p <0.001). Specifically, MITs’ noted improved confidence in their ability to help their mentees in understanding the expectations for advancement and promotion, economic and fiscal realities for a successful academic career, research group/lab management, how to effectively approach translational research, identifying professional goals and interests, resources (space, staff, etc.) and seeking opportunities to network and build professional collaborations. One MIT in the post-program survey commented: “The MDP seminars helped me understand the issues among junior faculty and provided more systematic ways to deal with them. These are valuable experiences that I will most definitively incorporate into my own skills.”
Change in MIT confidence in specific mentoring skills from baseline (pre-Mentor Development Program) compared to the post-program assessment (N = 26)