The Higher Ed Workplace Blog

October 27 is National Mentoring Day — CUPA-HR Resources to Help You Become a Higher Ed HR Mentor

Higher ed HR pros continue to chip away at their ever-changing and ever-growing to-do lists brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, less pressing matters have been placed on the back burner, among which may include mentorship opportunities. Though mentoring may not be as high on the priority list compared to other tasks, it’s important to not let these opportunities for professional growth and connection continue to fall off our radar.

October 27 is National Mentoring Day, and there’s no better time to revamp or kickstart a relationship with a mentee than now. As a mentor, you have the opportunity to teach, offer advice, help your mentee stay current on the latest trends and topics, inspire fresh ideas, and facilitate connections and foster relationships that could further your mentee’s career later on down the road. In the time of COVID-19, mentorships are more flexible than ever. Meetings are no longer limited to in-person arrangements, but can be held virtually and during times when mentees may not have been available pre-pandemic.

Here are a few questions to consider before stepping into the role of mentor:

  • What experiences and knowledge am I willing to share and why?
  • What professional decisions have I made that I am proud of or regret?
  • What books am I reading and who am I following on social media right now that encourages or challenges me?
  • What resources or connections can I share with my mentee?
  • For what period of time am I willing to assist my mentee?

It’s also worthwhile to answer these questions through the lens of COVID-19 and how the pandemic has helped you grow as a higher ed HR leader.

Finding or Becoming a Mentor

If you are interested in finding or becoming a mentor but don’t know where to start, try reaching out to:

  • Your CUPA-HR region board or local chapter chair
  • Your institution’s chief HR officer
  • Your peers, or others in your organization you admire

You can also contact for help connecting with potential mentors or mentees.


Be sure to check out these CUPA-HR resources to help guide you on your mentor journey:

Mentoring Toolkit (CUPA-HR members-only)

Fostering Mentorship Within Your Institution as a Higher Ed HR Pro 

Essentials Video: Making the Most of Being a Mentor (CUPA-HR members-only)

Support the Development of Your Early-Career Employees With Stretch Projects

6 Ways to Keep Your Retirees Engaged

Succession Planning Toolkit


The CUPA-HR office will be closed Fridays through August 19.