All of us can think of at least one or two people in our past who have had a mighty and positive impact on us; it may have been a parent, a good friend, a teacher, a supervisor or team member. As you perform a forensic examination of yourself, you observe their fingerprints all over the professional you have become.
Reflect for a moment on those individuals who have contributed most to your professional development. Who were they? What positions did they hold during the season they influenced you most? How did they impact you personally and professionally in a meaningful way? How does your practice now reflect the contributions they made in your life?
Research from the 1960s taught us that monkeys kept in isolation fared far worse that their counterparts who were allowed to share a cage with a monkey “buddy”. What lessons can we learn from the “business” of these clever primates that could inform a robust model of mentoring? We learn that humans are better together than alone. From this, a leap can be made in recognizing the value of the mentoring relationship.
In this dynamic time in the healthcare arena, there is a growing need for strong and qualified nursing professionals to provide direct patient care, step into leadership roles in clinical settings, and to effectively educate those new to our profession. Please join us for a lively discussion of the art of mentoring. We will take a brief look at the literature to learn about the definition of mentoring as well as the barriers and benefits of mentoring. Most importantly, we will begin to identify practical steps to develop and maintain an effective mentoring program.
Karen LaMartina, PhD RN
Nursing Program Director
Johnson County Community College
Janalee Isaacson, PhD, RN
Assistant Professor, retired
School of Nursing and Human Physiology