5 Ways to Find a Mentor

UMKC faculty are leaders in their fields—and they’re within reach

With a student-to-faculty ratio resembling a small private college, UMKC makes mentorship a central part of the student experience. Though more than 16,000 students are enrolled, the 14:1 student-to-faculty ratio is unusually small for such a large university.

The result: UMKC has many mentorship success stories.

What advice would you give other students about finding a mentor?

1. Look for someone who’s already mentoring.

Ada Thapa and Ryan Mohan of the School of Biological Sciences

“Dr. (Ryan) Mohan believed in me and helped me become a scientist. He helps students like me who are trying to get into research but don’t have any prior experience.

I got accepted to four different graduate schools for my master’s program because of my skills and experiences that I have learned from UMKC.”

Ada Thapa, ’17
Bachelor of Science in Biology
School: School of Biological Sciences


2. Identify an expert in your field.

Chad Feather and Ben Williams of the Henry W. Bloch School of Management

“It is important that your mentor has been where you are and can give you the pros and cons of each important decision you have to make. Also, it is important to find somebody who has a similar personality that allows you to relate to each other. Finding Ben (Williams) as a mentor has been extremely helpful in growing and developing at UMKC.”

Chad Feather, December ’17
Bachelor in Business Administration, emphasis in Marketing and Entrepreneurship
School: Henry W. Bloch School of Management


3. Work at building a relationship.

Sydney Harvey and Clancy Martin of the College of Arts and Sciences

“Make up excuses to go to their office hours, find research they can help you develop and constantly ask their advice about your work.”

Sydney Harvey,’16 and ’18
Programs: Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy; Master of Arts in Theatre
School: College of Arts and Sciences


4. Find someone who challenges you.

Ryan Holmes and Megan Hart of the School of Computing and Engineering

“A mentor isn’t someone who always cheers you on or focuses on your successes. They may do that, but more importantly, they will chip away at areas of your weaknesses and channel your strengths so that you can be the best version of you.”

Ryan Holmes, ’13; ’16; ’18
Bachelor and Master of Science in Civil Engineering; Interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Civil Engineering with a co-discipline in Chemistry
School: School of Computing and Engineering


5. Take initiative and pay it forward.

Mona Lyne of the College of Arts and Sciences and Parker Webb of the Henry W. Bloch School of Management

“Dr. (Mona) Lyne and I would not have our relationship today if I hadn’t gone above and beyond to hunt her down and get the opportunities that she provided. That said, if you’re looking for mentorship, mentor someone, too. There is nothing that will make you a better mentee than being a mentor and anyone can do it. I am a Big Brother with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Kansas City and it is one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had.”

Parker Webb, 14’; ’18
Bachelor of Arts in Political Science; Master of Science in Entrepreneurial Real Estate
Schools: College of Arts and Sciences; Henry W. Bloch School of Management



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