If the current definition of mentors/advisors stands, I have never had
a mentor. I have relied on friendships (usually with male students)
to get through courses or just gone ahead by myself getting
scholarships or getting into grad school. This has helped enormously
because something usually turns up which no-one knew of. The first
female science teacher I ever had was a first-year biochemistry
teacher whom I admired but who I never really knew. The way she
teaches and does research, however, has stuck in my mind as "the way I
should do things". That's the closest example.
Most of the mentors I have seen discussed have been male. How did you
meet them? Did you choose the mentors or was it a mutual thing or was
it assigned? Can you have more than one mentor at the same time and
last but not least, how many areas of your life did that mentor affect?
Also, does a close core of female friends (we all went to different
universities for undergrad and grad studies, but we keep in touch and
keep track of each others' successes and publications) count as a
mentorship? We would all pull strings for each other and pitch in
with advice all the time.
jegrundy at ccs.carleton.ca