Mentoring Programs for PhD Students

Existing programs are meant to support early-career female researchers in identifying personal skills and competences and implementing them in their career planning. They offer:

  • a personal connection with a suitable mentor
  • workshops and trainings
  • networking events

Details such as

  • duration of the program
  • the number of meetings between mentor and mentee
  • the focus on an academic versus a non-academic career

may differ and be discussed individually. Mentees receive a certificate after successful participation. These programs exist:

Mentoring within the Max Planck Society

The Minerva FemmeNet was introduced in 2001 and is open to PhD students up to junior professors. The mentors are from Germany and abroad and typically have gained professional experience while managing to balance family life with their careers. The program aims at supporting and preparing female scientists for leading positions in academia. Minerva FemmeNet collaborates with partner universities in Germany and German-speaking countries.

Mentoring within the University of Cologne

You can find an overview of all mentoring programs of the UoC here. We have selected the following programs, which we find especially suitable for our female PhD students.

The Cornelia Harte Mentoring (CHM) is a structured program for German and German-speaking international female scholars. It offers competence training, networking opportunities and one-on-one training. The program requires a small participation fee and distinguishes between two program types:
Cornelia Harte Mentoring 2001: for scholars aiming for a career outside of academia;
Cornelia Harte Mentoring Pro: for advanced doctoral researchers and Postdocs aiming for an academic career.
The Mentoring Program for International Female Scholars was established by the University of Cologne to support female PhD candidates and postdocs throughout their academic career. In an early process the female scholars are matched with highly experienced mentors from the required research fields. This program guides the mentees in making their individual career choices either within academics or in a field outside of academia. The program consists of a framework program including networking events, workshops and, if desired, individual coaching sessions.
The MINT Mentoring program supports female PhD students and Postdocs with personal and professional career decisions. The program is shaped to guide mentees to either pursue an academic career or a career in the industry and business sector. Courses and workshops are solely offered in German, so the mentee must have sufficient German knowledge to fully benefit from the program.
The Gender Mentoring Agency is suitable for all female PhD students and Postdocs who are aiming for a career in academia. There is no structured curriculum, but rather a personalized program for each mentee. Prospective mentees are therefore welcome to apply throughout the year.

There are many opportunities for receiving support during your doctoral studies, but selecting the one that suits you best may be difficult. If you require further assistance in your selection, the is more than welcome to help you.

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