Community Mentorship

Community Mentors are members of the BRN community with substantial expertise in one or more areas of bioinformatics, computer science, or life science. These mentors answer questions over Slack and typically provide appointments for 30-minute virtual mentorship sessions. Learn more at the links below.

Image by Dylan Gillis

For Trainees

Community Mentors are experts in one or more areas of bioinformatics, computer science, or life science. They have volunteered their time to address your questions and offer you advice either through Slack or via 30-minute mentorship sessions over video conferencing.

How to get help:

  1. View the database of mentors (below) to see who can best assist you with your questions.

  2. You can reach out to your selected mentor(s) at any time over Slack by DM'ing them.

  3. If you want a 30-minute virtual mentorship session, sign up using the mentor's Calendly link listed in the database (or DM them on Slack to arrange a time).

  4. At all times, follow the BRN Code of Conduct.

Hints for a successful mentorship session:

  • Come prepared with specific question​s

  • Be open to feedback, even if you disagree

  • Be polite and express gratitude for the mentor's time

  • Do NOT ask the mentor to give you a job, PhD position, etc.

  • Other good hints: Blog Post.

 

For Mentors

Many BRN trainees are in need of guidance, but they lack access to traditional scientific and professional mentorship. BRN Community Mentors make themselves available to answer trainee questions, and they provide virtual mentorship sessions for trainees who need synchronous help.

What a Community Mentor does:

  • Answers questions on Slack DMs and help channels

  • Provides 30 min/week for one-on-one mentorship with trainees

  • Connects trainees to people and resources within their network when appropriate

  • Follows the BRN Code of Conduct

Who is eligible:

Anyone with substantial expertise in any area of bioinformatics, computer science, or the life sciences.

How to get started

  1. Prospective mentors apply here.

  2. Once accepted, mentor information will be added to the mentor database and shared with the community.

  3. Trainees will contact mentors over Slack for help, and they will make appointments for 30-minute mentorship sessions.

Tips for effective mentorship in BRN:

  • Our trainees are from all over the world. Some are less familiar with English. Some will have slower internet connections, or live in different time zones. Please be patient, understanding, and supportive even when you encounter these barriers.

  • Try to understand the trainee's needs before offering advice. Depending on their background & location, they may not have access to the same resources / opportunities as yourself.

  • Show empathy and help them the way you would want to be helped if you were in their shoes.

  • Open up your network to the trainees, when appropriate & suggest colleagues or opportunities you can refer them to.