Mentor Guidelines

Because we understand just how powerful and meaningful your mentorship can be for young people, we ask that you observe the following guidelines when mentoring. These guidelines are aimed at maximizing the benefits that students receive from your volunteering as well as ensuring your protection. They are intended to help reiterate qualities of an appropriate student-mentor relationship.

  • Be responsive and conscientious. Provide responses at the designated time. Respond to requests in a professional, responsible manner. If you are not able to respond timely, send a message to your student to let them know.
  • The time required to be an effective mentor varies by the type of research being conducted and where the student is in the process. In general, you may find that one hour a week is sufficient at the beginning and less time is needed as the mentorship progresses.
  • All communications with students should be through the Mentor Matching Engine. Do not contact students by phone or by private email.
  • Do not give personal information, including your telephone number, or address (email or residence), or personal photographic images to students.
  • Do not offer money or gifts to students.
  • Immediately share concerns about student safety with the teacher.
  • If you become uncomfortable or concerned about any aspect of the mentor relationship, please contact
  • The relationship between a mentor and a student should remain professional in nature.
  • Do not become involved in student disputes. Refer these situations to the teacher.
  • Report any inappropriate behavior (including harassment) immediately to the teacher.
  • Avoid conflict of interest situations and refrain from actions that may be perceived as such.
  • Treat all individuals with a sense of dignity and worth, and respect and honor differences. Do not pressure anyone to accept your political, cultural, or religious beliefs.
  • Do not use profane and abusive language and avoid inappropriate behavior of all kinds.

Failure to follow these guidelines, conduct oneself in a respectful and professional manner, and/or satisfactorily perform volunteer assignments, may be reason to terminate your relationship with the Mentor Matching Engine.

We want this to be a meaningful and positive experience for you, yet understand that not every opportunity is for everyone. If you would like to discuss your experience or discontinue your involvement, please contact your mentor supervisor.