About the Pilot:

Washington State University is gearing up to conduct a Virtual Staff Mentoring and Professional Development Pilot Program during the 2020-2021 academic year.

The upcoming virtual pilot will run from October 2020 through May 2021.

With supervisory approval, the mentor/mentee program is available to all WSU staff system-wide. Supervisors are encouraged to allow staff members to participate in accordance with WSU’s BPPM 60.72 Release Time Policy.

In early 2019, Commission on the Status of Women submitted a proposal for the creation of this program. Two small in person pilots were conducted in Fall 2019 and Spring 2020 on the Pullman campus. The Virtual Staff Mentoring and Professional Development Pilot Program supported by the Office of the President, and is administered by Human Resource Services.

Mentor/Mentee Applications:

2020-2021 mentor and mentee applications have closed. Notifications have been made to all successful applicants.

HRS will solicit feedback from virtual program participants across the WSU system to assess the program at the end of the Spring 2021 semester to determine feasibility and continuation options.


Attendance by mentors and mentees is strongly reccommend at the initial virtual kick-off meeting which will allow for pair assignments to be given and overall expectations detailed.

Between October 2020 and May 2021, mentors and mentees are expected to meet a minimum of once a month for about an hour. More meetings can be arranged as often as agreed upon, or as work allows, between the two parties. It is the responsibility of the mentor and mentee to arrange virtual meetings they see fit.

The mentor and mentee will determine when and how to meet for virtual mentoring.  The sessions should occur during your regular working hours and coordinated with your supervisor and in accordance with WSU’s BPPM 60.72 Release Time Policy.

Goals and Objectives:

The purpose of the pilot WSU Staff Mentoring Program is to develop relationships and facilitate interaction among staff, resulting in a stronger, more collaborative environment. Specifically, the goal is to provide new and existing staff with a valuable resource, a mentor, who offers support and encouragement, and is the point of reference for many additional resources.

With supervisory approval, the mentor/mentee program is available to all WSU staff.

A survey will be sent via email at the end of the semester will allow for debriefing and the chance to recommend feedback back to the pilot program coordinators.

Benefits of Mentoring Program:

  • Learn new practices and skills to grow professionally
  • Develop new, collegial relationships
  • Learn more about WSU Culture, history, policies and resources
  • Increase morale and knowledge of the University
  • Help staff to develop professional career goals; discover how to achieve goals
  • Stronger staff retention
  • Allow experienced staff to gain new perspectives, develop new relationships and grow professionally
  • Improve the quality of services provided to the campus community. 

Mentor and Mentee Matching:

  • The mentee will have worked at WSU for a minimum of 1 year.
  • The mentor and mentee will not be from the same WSU unit.
  • The mentor will not be in a supervisor capacity over mentee.
  • The mentor and mentee will be matched, as best as possible, based on professional experience, strengths, areas of interest, and program expectations detailed in the application they used to apply to the program.

The mentoring process should be a rewarding experience for all participants. Both mentor and mentee should feel comfortable with the match. After the first virtual meeting, if mentor or mentee is not satisfied, the program coordinator will make another attempt to find a match. Participants are allowed only one rematch during the program cycle.

Administration of the Program:

Commission on the Status of Women championed this program and we are very grateful for all their efforts. Human Resources Services (HRS) is now designated as administrator of the program and corresponding procedures and all questions should be referred to HRS.

Email: hrs.mentor@wsu.edu Phone: (509) 335-1975


Updated 10/20/2020