Participant perspectives on a department of surgery faculty mentoring program

Published:November 04, 2022DOI:


      • Mentorship programs are paramount to success in academic surgery.
      • We created a mentor/mentee pairing program in the Department of Surgery.
      • A majority of respondents would recommend the program.
      • Tangible outcomes may not be the best goal of mentorship programs.
      • Nontangible outcomes include sharing steps to increase productivity and promotion.



      Mentorship in academic medicine serves to promote career advancement and job satisfaction. This study was to evaluate the initial results of a faculty mentorship program in an academic Department of Surgery.


      A faculty mentorship program was initiated in July 2015 with 63 participants. Junior faculty mentees (n = 35) were assigned senior faculty mentors (n = 28). After three years, an electronic survey was administered and the results analyzed.


      Response rate was 67% (n = 42). 34 (81%) respondents had met with their mentor/mentee at least once. Topics discussed included: research (76%), leadership (52%), work-life balance (45%), and promotion (5%). Mentees endorsed achieving promotion (n = 2), increasing research productivity (n = 2), and obtaining national committee positions (n = 2). 61% of mentors and 53% of mentees felt they benefitted personally from the program. Actionable improvements to the mentorship program were identified including more thoughtful pairing of mentors and mentees with similar research interests.


      Participants felt the mentorship program was beneficial. Further investigation regarding the optimization of the mentor-mentee pairing is warranted to maximize the benefits from structured mentorship in academic surgery.


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