Academic mentoring is crucial to the successful career of young academics like you.

“If you’re a young enthusiastic medic wanting to pursue a research career you need dispassionate advice on how to go about doing it, and on which are good laboratories to go to. Mentoring is an important part of any career. But in the case of science it’s particularly critical. It’s essential to go to a laboratory which teaches people to ask questions, and how to identify which are the important ones as well as how to tackle them.”

Sir Mark Walport FRS FMedSci, Director of the Wellcome Trust

For most medical researchers, a mentoring scheme will be one element in a diverse portfolio of support:

• Formal mentoring – available through the Academy but also through some deaneries, funders and universities.

• Informal mentoring – support and advice, typically delivered on an ad hoc basis, perhaps over a long period of time, by colleagues, supervisors or other contacts.

• ‘Spot’ mentoring – one-off conversations, probably with senior academics, perhaps at an Academy event.

• Peer mentoring – a small group of individuals at a similar career stage, meeting regularly to support one another. To be most effective, clear agreement is required on the aims and limits of the process.

With this in mind we encourage semiformal peer mentoring within the academic foundation community in Norwich. Other sources of advice and support are your supervisor and the academic F2 lead. You may wish to consider embarking on a more formal mentoring programme.

There are many sources of information about mentoring including the Academic of Medical Sciences, university of East Anglia and other institutions:



Successful NIHR or MRC funded Academic Clinical Fellows/Students (mentors) will provide semiformal mentorship support to academic foundation trainees (mentees).

The mentee will approach the mentor within 4 months of entering the foundation programme (year 1).

Four meetings will be held

  • in the F1 year
  • between August and September of the F2 year
  • between October and February of the F2 year
  • between March and July of the F2 year.

The timing of the meetings will depend on the date of the mentee’s academic F2 attachment. The meetings will preferably be face-to-face but can be via video conferencing or telephone.

The aim of the meeting will be to

  • Share experiences
  • Discuss a plan for achieving the mentee’s goals and foundation objectives
  • Signpost resources and information if required
  • Discuss future career opportunities including academic clinical fellow application

It will not be to

  • Directly help with or achieve the learning F2 objectives
  • Collaborate or work together or a research or educational project
  • Resolve issues with the programme or the mentee’s supervisor or training

The date of the meeting should be recorded in the F2 doctors training record but the details of the conversations should not be recorded.