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ReMatch[+] FAQs for Mentors

Key Program Dates for AY2122

2021

  • Sept - Mentor registration opens (ends no later than November events)

  • Oct 6 - Meet & Greet #1

  • Oct 14 - Meet & Greet #2

  • Nov 9 - Meal for Mentoring dinner #1

  • Nov 10 - Meal for Mentoring dinner #2

  • Dec 6-21, 2021 and Jan 10-14, 2022 -  Meet & Match meetups

2022

  • Jan 7 - ReMatch+ mentee and mentor applications open in GPS

  • Jan 10-15 - Pairing registration period for mentors to submit mentee pairing for confirmation by mentee

  • Jan 10-16 - Pairing registration period for mentees (must respond to pairing invitations from mentors within 24 hours of receipt)

  • Jan 16, 11:55 pm - Pairing registration closes

  • Jan 19, 12-1:30 pm - ReMatch+ application workshop for mentors and mentees 

  • Feb 6, 11:55 pm - ReMatch+ mentee application deadline 

  • Feb 9, 11:55 pm - ReMatch+ mentor application deadline (including review of mentee applications)

  • Feb 14 - Faculty adviser review and approval deadline 

  • Mar 4 - Summer funding decisions announced

  • May 30-Jul 29 - Residential summer program 

  • Jul 28 - Research summary statement and program survey deadline

  • Fall - Participation in program outreach panel

General program information for mentors

Q. What is ReMatch?

ReMatch is a research-mentoring program that offers first- and second-year undergraduates the opportunity to connect with graduate students and postdoctoral researchers in their fields of interest. The program runs events from September to January and is intended to inform the pairing of mentors with mentees based on their shared research interests

Q. Who can participate as a ReMatch mentor?

Any graduate student or postdoc can take part in ReMatch events offered during the academic year. All fields are welcome, including disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences and engineering. Typically, the summer ReMatch+ program is reserved for post-generals graduate students and postdocs.

Q. What can I expect to gain from ReMatch?

For graduate and postdoctoral mentors, ReMatch is an opportunity to:

  • Gain mentoring experience that will be valuable to future teaching and research.

  • Pay it forward and help undergraduates become interested and involved in research in your field.

Q. What is the time commitment expected of mentors in the fall? 

A few hours, typically over mealtimes. Participating mentors are expected to attend at least one of the Meet and Greets and one of the Meal for Mentoring dinners in October and November, though they are welcome to attend additional events. Check OUR’s calendar to see a full list of events and RSVP information. Mentors wishing to continue with the Dec-Jan Meet & Match meetups typically will spend a few additional hours meeting with potential mentees. Keep in mind that the program should always work according to your availability; if you find you can no longer participate, please notify the program via email to our@princeton.edu so we can update the mentor directory.  

Q. How do I register to become a ReMatch mentor?

New mentors are encouraged to attend one of the program information sessions, typically offered in mid-September. When you are ready to sign up as a program mentor, complete the ReMatch Mentor Profile Form in early fall and sign up for two (or more) of the October and November events. Mentor registration for the current academic year typically closes before the November events, as mentors must have participated in at least one ReMatch event in the fall to be eligible for the summer program.  

Q. What is ReMatch+?

ReMatch+ is the nine-week summer research program open to those who participated in ReMatch in the fall. During the program, graduate students and postdocs have the chance to mentor an undergraduate student on a research project. Mentor-mentee pairs are formalized in mid-January; registered pairs may apply together in early February to participate in ReMatch+ over the summer. The program typically runs from early June to the end of July, in person and on campus. All mentors and mentees are expected to participate for the entirety of the program and attend the weekly  Summer Research Colloquium

Q. If I participate in fall events, do I have to also take part in the summer ReMatch+ program?

No, you do not have to participate in ReMatch+ to do ReMatch in the fall. However, you must participate in at least one ReMatch event in the fall to be eligible for the summer program. 

October - November programming 

Q. How will I meet potential mentees?

Upon registering to the program, your profile will be added to the ReMatch mentor directory which mentees will consult early in the academic year to learn about available mentors. The program typically hosts two Meet & Greet (M&G) events in October and two Meal for Mentoring (M4M) dinners in November. The M&Gs informally bring together mentees and mentors to connect and talk about research. At the M4M dinners, mentees are assigned three-30 minute rotations between tables of mentors based on their interest in specific research methodologies. Following the dinners, mentees are invited to complete a follow up survey to list up to three mentors they wish to connect with further for the Meet & Match meetups in December and early January.

Q. What topics will mentees typically want to talk about?

Mentees will want to learn more about your research and how they can get involved in your field. Specifically, they might want to know:

  • What are some papers or journals they can read to familiarize themselves with your field?

  • Are there shadowing opportunities in your lab or department?

  • What does a typical day look like for you or someone in your field?

  • What kinds of courses should they be thinking about to prepare for research in your field? 

Q. What if a student is interested in my department but not my area of research?

If you get this question before the November events, you could see if other graduate students or postdoctoral researchers in your department are interested in signing up as a ReMatch mentor and, if so, connect them with the undergraduate student in question. If you get the question after the November events, you could point them to colleagues in the department and let them know of other summer programs outside of ReMatch+ (e.g. OURSIP). 

Q. An undergraduate asked me questions about classes to prepare them for research but I am not familiar with Princeton’s undergraduate curriculum. How can I help them?

You can point them to the Undergraduate Announcement and encourage them to contact your department’s Director of Undergraduate Studies. 

Q. How should I answer questions about the ReMatch program itself?

Feel free to point students with questions about the program to the ReMatch[+] for Mentees FAQs page. Students can also contact the program via email to our@princeton.edu.

Dec-Jan Meet & Match Meetups

Q. What do Meet & Match meetups typically look like? 

In late November, mentors contemplating the summer program will receive a list of the mentees who expressed interest in meeting with them. Mentors will be asked to coordinate follow up meetings before winter break (ideally) or in early January. Meetings can be a variety of formats and are at the discretion of the mentor. For example, you could schedule 1:1 or small group (in-person or online) meetings, lead a physical or virtual tour of your lab or research space (for virtual tours, please contact Sorat Tungkasiri at stungkas@princeton.edu and cc poussart@princeton.edu to borrow a steadicam attachment to use with your phone video camera), or offer shadowing opportunities for students to observe your work. Once you’ve confirmed the date and time of your meetups, please complete the ReMatch meetup registration form; use the form to request $7 PawPoint cards to enjoy a coffee or a snack during your meetup(s). 

Q. A number of mentees expressed interest in meeting with me for the Dec-Jan meetups and I can’t schedule 1:1 meetings with all of them. Do you have advice on how to navigate this?

While having a larger pool of applicants to start with is generally a good problem to have, you’ll definitely want to be strategic with your time. Organizing these meetings should not amount to a huge time commitment as making progress on your research remains the priority; but do give these some thought so the time spent with the mentees is meaningful and helps both you and the mentees get a sense of how well you would fit as a mentor-mentee pair. 

One approach you might consider here is to email your students as a group and ask them to write a short letter of interest, introducing themselves and explaining why they are specifically interested in meeting with you (make sure you give them a word limit and set a clear deadline!) Then, based on the submissions you receive, you could choose a subset of students to meet with. You may also want to ask your faculty adviser if they have some suggestions on how to navigate this situation as well; they are likely to have dealt with similar situations in the past!

Q. Does participating in the Meet & Match meetups lock me into the ReMatch+ Summer Program? 

No, meetups with interested mentees are intended to facilitate deeper connections and further the matching process--finding your Re[search]Match! If you do find a Re[search] mentee match, you’ll want to discuss the possibility of applying to the summer program together.

Finding your Re[search]Match! 

Q. How does the pairing process work? 

Mentor-mentee pairs are meant to be the result of multiple meetings and discussions that confirm a shared alignment of research interest as well as a compatibility to do research together. The intentionality behind the pairing process is one of the key determinants of a productive and effective mentor-mentee ReMatch+ experience.The pairing process begins during the Dec - Jan Meet & Match meetups and is typically formalized by mid January. Pairing is based on a mutual selection and agreement between you and your mentee. 

Q. Do you have any advice on selecting a mentee?

We often tell undergraduates to evaluate two main criteria when meeting with potential mentors; first, how well do their research interests align with that of the mentors? How excited are they by the topic / field? And second, can they imagine themselves spending the summer researching with them? What is the mentor’s mentoring style and would their work style be a good fit with that of their mentor? 

When evaluating potential mentees, you’ll find natural overlap with the above criteria. Once you’ve met mentees, you might have a short list of 1 or 2 students; then you could share a paper with them and ask that you meet again to discuss it together -> that would give you a chance to assess the student’s curiosity and engagement level with the material and how the two of you interact.  You might want to ask your faculty adviser if they have some advice of their own to share too. This is also a great way to open the discussion with your adviser that you are interested in mentoring over the summer!

Q. What happens if more than one student is interested in working with me for the summer?

The program is designed for one-to-one pairings. As a courtesy to the students who expressed interest in your research, we hope you will reach out to explain that you are no longer looking for a mentee and to encourage them to seek alternative plans. You might wish to connect them with affiliated research groups in your department. Alternatively, you could point them toward the OURSIP program and other funded undergraduate research opportunities and suggest they schedule an advising meeting with the Director of Undergraduate Research via Calendly to discuss other opportunities available to them.

Q. I received a list of mentees interested in my research but I no longer plan to mentor an undergraduate this summer. What should I do?

Please refer to the answer for the above question.

Q. I’ve now identified my mentee pair, what should I do next? Register your pairing!

Congratulations! Once you’ve formed a pair with a mentee, you must formally register with the program before 11:50 pm Jan 16, 2022. As the mentor, you will  initiate this process by selecting a mentee through an online form between Jan 10 – 15. Upon submission, your mentee will receive the pairing invitation via email and will have 24 hours to respond. Confirmed mentor-mentee pairs wishing to apply for ReMatch+ are expected to attend the Proposal Writing Workshop together on Jan 19, 12 – 1:30 pm (RSVP). If you haven’t already done so, be sure to discuss your plans with your faculty adviser as soon as possible as they will be asked to endorse your proposal.

Q. If I don’t find a mentee that I would like to work with, what are the next steps?

While you may choose to continue (informally) mentoring some of the mentees you’ve already met through ReMatch, there may also be students who are still looking for mentors that we can put you in touch with; contact our@princeton.edu for more information.

Applying for the Summer ReMatch+ Program in February

Q. I’m interested in applying for ReMatch+ summer program. Where do I start?

Pairings interested in taking part in the ReMatch+ summer program should register to attend the Proposal Writing Workshop together on Jan 19, 12 – 1:30 pm (RSVP). Applications for the summer program typically become available in GPS in early January and close in early February (see Key Dates section for this year’s timeline). Additional information about the summer program is available here. 

Q. As the mentor, should I already have a project in mind?

We encourage you to work with your mentee to find a project that is interesting and rewarding for both of you. While you might already have a project in mind, you should also try to be flexible to the interests of your mentee. You may also want to consult the Summer Research Colloquium Participant Archive which lists examples of past projects and links to participant videos. 

Q. How competitive are the ReMatch + grants? How likely is it we put together an application and are selected for funding? 

The selection process looks for proposals with clearly articulated motives that outline relevant methodologies, realistic scope and detailed (week by week) timelines. While we’ve been able to fund a majority of proposals in the past, keep in mind that the acceptance rate does vary from year to year based on the size of the application pool.

Q. Do I need approval from my adviser to take part in the summer program?

Yes! Your graduate/postdoctoral faculty adviser will be asked to review and endorse your ReMatch+ proposal as part of the application process this spring; we strongly recommend that you discuss your interest in the program with them prior to applying. All graduate students taking part in the summer program should be post-generals. 

Q. It’s December (or later) - I am a graduate student (or postdoc) and just heard about the program through another student. They connected me with a mentee whose research interests closely align with mine. Can I still sign up to be a ReMatch mentor and be eligible for the summer ReMatch+  program, if I didn’t attend any of the fall programming?

Typically, mentors must have participated in at least one ReMatch event in the fall as well as one Dec-Jan Meet & Match meetup to be eligible for the summer program. To request an exemption, please contact the program at our@princeton.edu. Alternatively, you may wish to look into the OURSIP program with your faculty adviser as an alternate program your mentee could apply to receive funding to do research with your group this summer. We hope you will consider signing up to become a ReMatch mentor next fall

Q. I won’t be at Princeton this summer. What other research opportunities are available in future for me to work with my mentee?

Princeton undergraduates are required to undertake significant independent work their junior and senior year, usually in the form of a junior paper(s) and/or senior thesis. In coordination with your faculty adviser, these can be great opportunities to work with your mentee if they have shown an interest in your area of research.

ReMatch in the Spring

Q. My mentee is interested in doing volunteer research with me this spring. Is this possible as part of ReMatch?

As a ReMatch mentor, you should feel free to provide informal mentorship to mentees through small group meet ups, discussions on readings, or other such activities throughout the academic year. Per university policy, undergrads are not allowed to do "volunteer" research at Princeton. Official research assistantships or other research relationships are not possible unless they are paid positions or are part of independent work projects. While ReMatch does not provide funding for research assistantships during the academic year, you may be able to secure funding for your mentee through your home department or faculty PI. If your mentee has been awarded federal work-study funds, you may encourage them to look into using these funds for an RA position with you and your faculty PI by contacting the Office of Financial Aid. Please note that student employees are typically scheduled to work a maximum of 10 hours per week, so that their employment does not interfere with their educational goals.

Q. Do you have suggestions on how to engage with my mentee this spring and prepare for the summer?

Yes, here are a few ideas:

  • Share papers relevant to your research project with your mentee and propose to meet to discuss. 
  • Offer your mentee a few opportunities to shadow your research so they gain familiarity with relevant research methods.
  • Introduce your mentee to other members of your research group and department; including your department’s director of undergraduate studies (especially if they intend to major in your department) and undergraduate administrator.
  • Invite them to attend group meetings, journal clubs and/or department seminars with you so they get a sense of the research culture and community.
  • Let your mentee know which health and safety trainings they will be required to do ahead of the summer and encourage them to enroll this spring.

Participating in the Summer ReMatch+ Program

Q. Will the 2022 ReMatch+ program be fully in-person or run remotely? What is the time commitment?

In summer 2022, we hope to resume the on-campus in-person program, which will tentatively run for nine weeks from May 30 - July 29, 2022. Participants are expected to be on campus Monday-Friday through the end of the program and attend the Summer Research Colloquium weekly workshops.

Q. What is the Summer Research Colloquium?

The Summer Research Colloquium (SRC) is a weekly workshop series that runs concurrently to the ReMatch+ and OURSIP summer research programs. SRC workshops focus on best practices in mentorship, communicating research (e.g., writing a research report, presenting research to a general audience), and contributing to a diverse research community. SRC also hosts lunch lectures to expose students to Princeton faculty members, their research, individual paths through academia and experiences with mentorship.

Q. As a mentor, how many hours a week am I expected to spend on my mentee’s project?

The number of hours you spend with your mentee will likely vary from one week to the next. Minimally, mentors meet with their mentees once a week to check in, discuss progress, answer questions, troubleshoot challenges and provide guidance on next steps; they might also plan a few meetings during the summer when the faculty PI is present so the mentee gets to experience that interaction as well. If training is involved (which it often is), then the time investment may be more during that stage. We encourage pairs to set up clear guidelines / expectations at the beginning of the summer (e.g. when are you available to meet and discuss questions? What communication mode(s) do you prefer, via text, slack, email, phone, in person, etc?) Depending on the research group, mentees might also participate in group meetings, journal clubs, socials, etc

Q. Where will my mentee ‘sit’ this summer? 

Ideally, each mentee is assigned a space where they can productively conduct their research . If the program is in-person this summer, then mentors, along with their faculty PI will be responsible to advise students on their options (e.g. within the dept or faculty research space, library, lab, …) and coordinate access if necessary. 

Q. What are the final deliverables of the summer program? 

By the end of the program, mentees are typically expected to prepare a research progress report (i.e. extended version of the February proposal with initial results and discussion of next steps) to share with their mentor and faculty PI. They are also called to present their research to Freshman Scholars Institute participants; when the program runs in-person, this takes place via an end of summer poster conference. If the program has to run remotely, students prepare short research videos, which are then shared with FSI students. We hope mentors offer guidance and feedback to their mentees regarding the program deliverables.

Q. Do ReMatch projects go on to publication, either in an academic journal or through a Princeton publication? 

In the past, projects which resulted in publications were typically ones that evolved into junior projects and/or senior theses. Some resulted in mentees and/or mentors presenting their findings at academic conferences; these are great networking opportunities for grad school and beyond. 

Program Contact Information

Still have questions? Contact us at our@princeton.edu and we’ll do our best to answer them!

 

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