Elise Watson, Kelsey Moriarty, Madison Burns, Callie Diamonstein
Mentorship has been a long-standing and important piece of healthcare training, but few formal, structured mentorship programs exist in the genetic counseling field. Our report describes the creation and evaluation of the Genetic Counseling Assistant Mentorship Program (GCAMP) after two cycles of the program. Genetic counseling assistant (GCA) mentees were paired with genetic counselor mentors for support and advice primarily surrounding graduate school applications and professional development. Pairs were encouraged to meet at regular intervals, but the specific meeting patterns were determined by the pair based on the needs of the mentee. The GCAMP also involved electronic and interactive resources for mentees, which were continually developed. Many of the electronic resources were created and maintained by past and current GCAs, such as a list of local shadowing and advocacy opportunities and a list of factors to consider when evaluating graduate programs. Interactive resources included workshops, mock graduate school interviews, reviews of graduate school application materials, and social events. Mentors were also provided with resources about mentorship. Surveys were conducted to evaluate the program. Overall satisfaction with the program and the mentoring relationship was high among both mentees and mentors. In aggregate, results revealed that mentees felt strongly supported by the mentorship program and were highly satisfied with their mentorship experience. Results also showed that mentors enjoyed a high level of fulfillment and professional development themselves by participating in the program.
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