Mentor-Connect leaders welcomed faculty-led teams from 24 two-year colleges when they launched support of a tenth cohort of mentee colleges during the Mentor-Connect Winter Workshop held in New Orleans Feb. 9-11, 2022. Mentor-Connect is a National Science Foundation Advanced Technological Education project led by Florence-Darlington Technical College in partnership with the American Association of Community Colleges.
“I applaud your decision to be here, and to embark on the journey that can lead to NSF ATE funding,” Mentor-Connect Principal Investigator Elaine Craft said. Two-year college faculty teams must submit applications to Mentor-Connect, which requires that college teams agree to work with a mentor for nine months before submitting an ATE grant proposal in October.
Mentor-Connect uses a regenerative cycle for building leadership capacity among STEM faculty at two-year colleges.
Dr. Mary Crowe, NSF Program Officer and guest at the workshop, led the group in discussions about Helpful Hints and Fatal Flaws of project development and proposal building. The participants said this was a valuable part of the workshop to hear “directly from NSF’ what was expected. Her motto was “Team Work Makes the Dream Work.”
In addition to its work with faculty who are new to the ATE program, Mentor-Connect also offers the Mentor Fellows program to cultivate the mentoring and leadership skills of ATE principal investigators.
Since Mentor-Connect began in 2012 it has made significant progress toward its goal of broadening geographic and demographic participation in the ATE program. To date Mentor-Connect has helped 210 colleges, 383 ATE faculty and 221 Grant Writers and Administrators.