Peer Mentorship Program

Are you interested in mentorship?

Graduate studies can be demanding, highly individualized, and frequently self-directed, leading graduate students to feel isolated. We know it can be difficult to connect with peers and find a sense of belonging in the Faculty of Medicine, in part because our students work and learn across multiple sites. Peer mentorship offers a low-pressure space for learning from each other, giving & receiving support, and feeling more at home – whether that’s at UBC, in grad school, or in the research environment.

Why applying for a Mentorship Program?: Research has shown that peer mentorship can boost student wellbeing, improve academic, psychosocial, and career outcomes; and strengthen our sense of community engagement & connectedness.

What we offer: The GPE 12 months peer mentorship program offers a series of capacity building workshops to support mentors and mentees in their collaborative journey toward promoting personal and professional development in academia.

Requirement: We ask mentors and mentees to connect with each other at least monthly, whether in-person, by Zoom, via email or phone.

Length: The program lasts for one academic year (September 2022-August 2023).

Application process: If you would like to apply please follow the links below and fill the application form by September 16th at 12pm.


Application forms (closes on September 16th)

APPLY AS A MENTOR (we encourage postdoctoral fellows to apply, as well as trainees who have been in their degree program for 1 year or more: HERE

APPLY AS A MENTEE (for those who are beginning a new graduate degree in September 2022, or began their program less than 12 months ago) HERE


Next steps

After reviewing your application, we will be inviting you to an initial training & orientation workshop via Zoom (strongly encouraged), plus optional professional development opportunities throughout the year for those who wish to strengthen their mentorship knowledge and skills. You can find more information about training opportunities in the following section.


Training Opportunities

At the heart of peer mentorship is the relationship between mentor and mentee. No special training or skills are necessary; mentors simply need lived experience that is relevant to the mentee, and to commit to sharing that experience in useful ways.

However, some research suggests that training and/or structure can help peer mentors and mentees be more effective and confident in their roles, enriching the mentoring relationship for both parties.

In the 2022-2023 academic year, the GPE Office will be facilitating a series of professional development opportunities focused on transferrable mentorship skills. These optional workshops are open to grad students and postdocs across the Faculty of Medicine, in any mentorship program.

Registration information will be posted on this webpage, and circulated via mentorship programs, as each workshop is finalized.


The Power of Peer Mentorship (workshop and Canvas course)

What is mentorship, and why does it matter in grad school? We will reflect on mentorship and relationship values; review key communication skills; discuss setting goals & expectations; learn to support mentees in times of stress or distress; and plan for getting started in the mentoring relationship (dates will be announced soon)

Canvas course: Designed to be completed prior to attending a workshop (approx. 45-60 minutes). Self-enroll at


Making the Most of Mentorship (workshop)

What is mentorship, and why does it matter in grad school? We will reflect on mentorship and relationship values; explore possible goals for peer mentorship; review key communication skills, including expressing needs and preferences; and plan for starting strong in the mentoring relationship (dates will be announced soon).


Workshops throughout the year may include:

Active Listening & Asking Excellent Questions

  • Explores communication challenges, “managing up,” and giving/receiving feedback; will include opportunities to practice via role plays & demonstrations.

Resilience & Self-Care for Mentors

  • Discuss boundaries, self-care, and knowing your limits, plus self-doubt and “imposter syndrome” in mentorship (the “what can I possibly offer this person??” feeling!). Refresher on UBC wellbeing supports & services.

Models of Mentorship: Digging Deeper

  • There are many different styles and theories of mentorship; which one fits for you? How does mentorship intersect with supervision, coaching, or management? Includes troubleshooting for impasses, and ways of re-calibrating goals and tactics when necessary.

Mentorship Across Cultures

  • Strengthen your skills in communicating and relating to mentors/mentees with life experiences and backgrounds that differ from your own. Discussion of cultural safety (and threats to cultural safety); common challenges and how to navigate them.

Transitions in Mentorship

  • All relationships change – sometimes naturally and sometimes intentionally. Explore how to navigate the end of a mentoring term, and how to discuss preferences, expectations, and options (wrap up, continue, transition). Learn ways of seeking feedback and honouring time spent together.