Mentor Program

Mentors and Mentees at the 2016 CVM Mentor Program kickoff eventBecome a Mentor or Mentee

The University of Minnesota CVM Mentor Connection Program matches DVM students with practicing veterinarians who provide valuable career information and strategies. The program begins in October and ends the following April.

Mentoring relationships provide a meaningful learning experience for students outside the classroom. These relationships provide students with an opportunity for professional development, networking, and an exchange of ideas. Mentors living within a 90 mile radius of the twin cities have a greater likelihood of being placed with a student.

This program enables students to build their professional network, refine their communication skills, make connections between academics and career goals, explore new areas of interest, and gain exposure to career advice. Mentors are able to support the development of future leaders in the veterinary profession, expand their professional network, refine their coaching and mentoring skills, and strengthen ties with the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine.

Apply to become a mentor

Contact Us


Bill Venne
Chief Development Officer
College of Veterinary Medicine
Phone: 612-625-8480
E-mail: venne025@umn.edu

Kris Hayden
Events & Alumni Relations Associate
College of Veterinary Medicine
Phone: 612-624-7624
Email: krhayden@umn.edu

Mentor Responsibilities

  • Represent the veterinary career, reflecting the profession’s attitudes, concerns, and insights.
  • Serve as a representative of the profession and employer by introducing the student to your industry.
  • Spend approximately 2 hours or 2 meaningful contacts per month building a relationship with the student. Possibilities include face-to-face meetings, phone calls, emails, skype, or attending professional meetings together.
  • Assist the student in identifying realistic goals. Listen to the needs of the student, define goals, assess progress, and celebrate accomplishments.
  • Students are expected to initiate and maintain contact with mentors; however some students will need coaching. Outline your expectations for student initiative.
  • Maintain and model professional behavior. Define professional behavior if needed.
  • Respect confidences and trust each other.
  • Be yourself, be flexible, and be a good listener.
  • Communicate problems to the program director. Notify staff if there is a change in your ability to participate in the program.

Mentee Responsibilities

  • Initiate and maintain regular contact with the mentor.
  • Spend approximately 2 hours or 2 meaningful contacts per month building a relationship with your mentor. Possibilities include face-to-face meetings, phone calls, emails, skype, or attending professional meetings together.
  • Identify realistic goals. Discuss your needs, define goals, assess progress, and celebrate accomplishments.
  • Inform your mentor about your course schedule exam schedule, and other priorities.
  • Maintain and model professional behavior. Ask your mentor to define professional behavior.
  • Respect confidences and trust each other.
  • Be yourself, be flexible, and be a good listener.
  • Communicate problems to the program director. Notify staff if there is a change in your ability to participate in the program.