Mentoring & Medical School
Welcome to Project BreakThru, a site built around mentoring. Suffice to say, we have some pretty strong feelings about the role that mentoring plays.
But let's beg the question so we can explore the concept a bit. Flatly put, getting a mentor is the single most important thing you can do if you are interested in medical school and becoming a doctor. The reasons why - we'll go over in a moment. Below we'll go over some of history and current uses of mentoring, some research about mentoring, reasons why mentoring is important, how mentoring differs from a service, and how our BreakThru Network facilitates mentoring.
Mentoring is at least as old as recorded history - and it's probably significantly older then that too. In fact the term 'mentor' comes from the name of a character in Homer's Odyssey. Although in the Odyssey that character doesn't really display the characteristics we associate with mentoring.
However, we can safely assume that mentoring goes back much further then that. Before written communication, especially mass communication, people needed a way to train and pass on knowledge. It was from this need that mentoring was truly born. We've made the training and education of young learners very standardized in order make sure everyone is learning at kind of the same level. This one of the reasons why everyone learns similar things through high school. Yet, the need for individual teaching still has value! Just take a look at how apprenticeships are thriving because people see the value in mentorship.
Any health sciences student - including nursing students, medical students, and so on will go through many periods of mentorship. Accelerating in your third year of medical school, you'll receive constant mentoring up to and through residency. You can say that despite all our advances in mass communication, medicine still thrives upon a backbone of mentoring. Thus, mentoring has survived to modern times and it doesn't look like it's going away anytime soon.
In one of our favorite research studies "Does Mentoring Matter? A Multidisciplinary Meta-Analysis Comparing Mentored and Non-Mentored Individuals" the effects of mentoring are examined in different contexts. Specifically it looked at youth mentoring, academic mentoring, and workplace mentoring.
The meta-analysis found that there was a wide variety of benefits that came from mentoring. The biggest benefits were seen in academic and workplace mentoring. The mentoring you can get here at BreakThru hits all three of these domains.
After studying several different pieces of research on mentoring they found that mentoring was associated with improved career attitudes, work attitudes, and some career outcomes!
So, we just talked about some research that points to mentoring being connected to good stuff like improved career attitudes, work attitudes, and career outcomes. This is all stuff you want when you are are trying to become a doctor. But let's simplify things. Why do YOU need a pre-medical / pre-health major?
We're going to close by talking about something really important - the difference between mentoring and a service. When you pay for a service you are getting something tangible in return. If you pay to have an essay reviewed, you are getting that review. If you paid for admissions consulting, they'll do exactly that.
Mentoring however is a mix of the tangible and intangible. You get tangible advice, but you also get something intangible - experience and perspective. It is this intangible benefit that makes mentoring so incredibly valuable. It's also what makes it so that you shouldn't treat it like a service. Treat mentoring like an growth experience, not like a service.
Are you interested in more mentoring? Check out our services below and find yourself a Personal BreakThru Mentor!
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But never forget that we're here to help. Do you have a question about something you just read in our BreakThru Learner Series?
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Where Mentoring Happens
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