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Abstract

Purpose: Mentoring is a process and a relationship between a novice and an expert that fosters intellectual, personal and professional growth. The purposes of this article are to describe: 1) the structured academic component of a comprehensive mentoring program for students in a physical therapy program; and 2) the perceptions of faculty and students regarding this academic mentoring program. Method: Faculty and students completed electronic questionnaires developed specifically for each group. Results: Return rate was 54.50% (N=286) for students and 100% (N=18) for faculty. Overall, student positive response rates regarding the effect of the mentoring program on educational experiences, value of the program and communication with faculty mentor all exceeded 90.00%. Faculty responses revealed 88.89% agreed their mentees benefited from meeting with them regarding academic issues, 94.12% believed the mentoring program was valuable, and 82.35% thought the program was worth the time spent participating in it. Conclusion:Faculty mentors and student mentees perceived that students benefited from academic mentoring and that the mentoring program was valuable and worth the time spent participating in it. Other academic units may use this process as a basis for critical dialogue for developing the desired academic mentoring system for that particular academic unit.

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