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Cross-Institutional Mentoring Communities


Cross-Institutional Mentoring Communities (CIMC) are designed to create networks of mentoring as a robust support and feedback mechanism for faculty with personal characteristics and/or specific identities, especially intersectional identities traditionally underrepresented in STEM (e.g., women of color, LGBTQIA+ women, differently-able women) or simultaneous demands of an academic career and family caregiving responsibilities. The networks emphasize career obstacle problem-solving, as well as enhancing a sense of community and belonging. The program is intended to reduce isolation and exclusion, and to develop additional networks. The CIMCs are designed to facilitate inter-institutional exchanges and reflective learning among committee members about similarities and differences in climate and opportunities on different campuses, thus seeding fresh ideas across campus communities. This is intended to instill a culture of listening, awareness, and responsiveness to the concerns of women and URM faculty that results in systemic institutional change.

Cross-Institutional Mentoring Communities (CIMC) are based on Michigan Tech's Early Career Management (ECM, and Advanced Career Management (ACM, ADVANCE initiatives. CIMCs are yearlong mentoring committees that will partner mentees with mentors who have experienced similar challenges (usually 1-2 mentees, 3-4 mentors). Two of the participants will hail from different institutions than you in this ADVANCE Partnership. These cross-institution committees will be intentionally formed - to the best of our abilities - to match lived experiences pertaining to discipline and/or intersectional identities.

Adrienne Minerick, MTU
Adrienne Minerick from Michigan Tech leads the CIMC initiative









  1. CIMCs will be cross-institutional and organized around dimensions of intersectionality.
  2. The CIMC communities will include mentors who can personally identify with the concerns of individuals with intersectional identities by matching self-identified identity attributes among individuals at the partner universities.
  3. While a majority of the CIMC mentees will be assistant professors, associate professors pursuing promotion are also encouraged to participate.
  4. The overarching goals are to improve the work/life experiences of faculty with intersectional identities, increase their retention, and support their career success and progression.
  5. CIMCs will offer opportunities for faculty mentees to not only explore questions and share obstacles to career progress that may be difficult to recognize or to overcome, but will also provide mentees a network that will amplify their career achievements, give encouragement and build professional confidence.
  6. CIMCs will provide opportunities for faculty mentors to use their knowledge and lived experiences to facilitate the professional and personal growth of more junior faculty who share their intersectional identities.
  7. CIMCs will provide a venue to develop and share successful support strategies that can be institutionalized at the partner institutions and eventually disseminated to other institutions.


This form asks potential mentees and mentors to indicate demographic and other characteristics/identities (e.g., gender, race/ethnicity, parent/caregiver, country/region of origin, LGBTQIA+, disability and others). This will enable our team - comprised of individuals from each partner institution - to assemble CIMCs for mentees with mentors who have experienced similar challenges.