Old Become a Mentor

NCSSM is Seeking Mentors

  • to engage NCSSM students as thinkers, makers, doers in an ongoing or independent research project

  • offer an experience that requires the application of knowledge and skills to address challenges in the world beyond the classroom

  • from the Triangle for in person opportunities AND also from beyond the Triangle in virtual format

  • in any field of interest from STEM to humanities in a wide range of work environments (including universities, companies, nonprofits)

Options to Mentor

Rewards of Mentoring

  • Enjoy the energy and curiosity that students bring to your team

  • Impact and train the next generation

  • Showcase your research/innovation as our students communicate their work to their peers and the community

  • Introduce and recruit prospective college students and potential employees to your university/company

  • Provide essential mentoring experience for your staff and for postdoctoral fellows and graduate students

  • Enhance success in meeting outreach goals and/or funding of grant proposals

  • NCSSM seeks collaboration and provides Letters of Support to facilitate further opportunities for outreach

Get Involved

NCSSM needs you! The Class of 2022 students are currently seeking mentors.

To offer an opportunity for a student to engage in an ongoing or independent research project with you or with your team members who desire to serve as a mentor, please complete the Mentor Form for 2021-2022. Be prepared to select your preference for getting involved in the upcoming year.


With the COVID-19 circumstances, details of whether the program will be limited to virtual or permitted to send students to mentors' locations for the upcoming 2021-2022 summer and academic year have not yet been finalized. Please contact Dr. Sarah Shoemaker to offer an opportunity and learn more about our Mentorship Program (mentor@ncssm.edu).

See FAQ for Prospective Mentors for more information.

A Great Chance to Teach Young Minds

Mentor Expectations

Participating mentors are asked to:

  • welcome a student into your work environment

  • provide safety training and a safe environment for the student on site (and complete Form 2 of the NCSSM Scientific Review Committee paperwork to ensure safety)

  • permit NCSSM to complete an annual background check for active volunteer mentors at your site

  • to communicate with the Director of Mentorship and Research as quickly as possible regarding any needs or concerns

  • to provide brief evaluations of the students' performance and development (two 5-10 minute surveys per student)

  • offer direction and support as you guide the student on their own research project or a part of your ongoing research

  • be enthusiastic and willing to share your passion for your field of study

  • enjoy the energy and curiosity the students bring

Student Expectations

Mentorship students will:

  • apply concepts and skills learned in the classroom to be an active participant on a portion of an ongoing project or to develop a project of their own under the guidance and instruction of the mentor

  • pursue their curiosity and passion in any variety of the wide range of fields including STEM, humanities, social science

  • take ownership of their opportunity (with facilitation from NCSSM Director and NCSSM Instructor

  • complete all course assignments (assessed by NCSSM Instructor, no requirements for grading by mentors)

  • to develop the soft skills that will be an essential key to their success as they pursue their education and careers

  • to present their accomplishments to the community at the NCSSM Research Symposium (in spring and/or summer)

To learn more, see recent publication by NCSSM administrators (https://www.ncssm.edu/news/2016/10/18/ncssm-administrators-publish-in-gifted-child)

To assess student development and learning, NCSSM instructors assess student performance in the following assignments (which vary by program):

  • Annotated Bibliography (summaries of relevant publications)

  • Blogs (conveys records of activities, reflection, and planning)

  • Oral communications such as Elevator Pitch, 10 minute symposium presentation with slideshow

  • Written communications such as proposal writing, research paper/poster, literature review, etc.