Hi all! As you may or may not know, I’m stepping into the role of co-chair (along with Amy Vidali) of the Standing Group on Disability Studies. Part of this role entails coordinating the mentoring program, which is set up for scholars, teachers, and researchers interested in cultivating productive and supportive relationships between those of us vested in the intersections of disability and rhetoric. Many of us often feel a bit isolated as the only “disability studies” person in our departments and connecting with the wonderful group of DS/rhet comp can create a sense community.
In my own experience as a mentee, I cannot begin to describe the absolute pleasure of having someone who “gets it” respond to my work, not to mention the added (and perhaps even more crucial) benefit of tapping someone outside the confines of my own campus to offer me advice on navigating the often lonely and murky waters of graduate school survival. Although our mentor-mentee relationships are not meant to be hierarchical by nature, I found it very helpful to consult my mentor about the job market, about completing large-scale research projects, and about balancing my various academic and personal roles. She’d been there, done that!
I know that Amy has also loved working in a more peer-to-peer capacity, where she can get feedback on her work and provide feedback for her “mentee.”
We’d love to keep this program growing, hearty, and vibrantly demonstrating our community’s shared values of collaboration, connectedness, and interdependence. So if you are interested in becoming either a mentor or a mentee, please send an email to Tara Wood at firstname.lastname@example.org