|SDPA Mentorship Program|
Starting in 2016, the SDPA's Student Affairs Committee began developing a brand new SDPA Mentorship Program. Our program is designed to give practicing dermatology PAs the opportunity to share the clinical and professional pearls they have garnered over the years with fellow PAs who are just beginning their career, or who are new to the specialty of dermatology. As an SDPA mentor, a Fellow member is paired with a student, recent graduate, or practicing PA, for whom they can provide guidance on basic topics such as how to build a dermatology-focused resume, preferred clinical resources, and the appropriate role of the PA in dermatology.
The PA practice of dermatology is at an exciting and pivotal point in its history. More than ever, students entering the field need the support and guidance of those who are experienced. The mentorship program is not a clinical preceptorship nor a career search. It is designed solely to provide basic, but much-needed, one-on-one guidance via email or telephone. In volunteering a few minutes of your time to field simple questions, you can positively impact a colleague’s career, as well as the PA profession.
The SDPA is honored to have over more than 200 student members who are currently in PA school and have a desire to enter the field of dermatology. They have taken the first step towards their goal by joining the SDPA, attending conferences, and gaining knowledge and experience before even beginning their professional careers. In addition, the SDPA has over 500 members who are presently working but have less than 5 years of experience. Giving these students and young professionals a helping hand is not only part of the SDPA's strategic plan, but a duty that will foster a wave of highly skilled PAs working within the field of dermatology.
Read below to find out how you can sign up to become a mentor or mentee, participation rules and how to get started.
Matching Mentors and Mentees
The SDPA's Student Affairs Committee will select and match mentors and mentees based on their general location, availability and area of practice. However, we reserve the right to match any mentor and mentee based on criteria we feel appropriate. We will do our best to match mentors and mentees based on availability as quickly as we can.
Once a mentor and mentee have been matched, we will connect you together by email and you can begin your 3 month mentorship.
Why should you become a mentor?
In order to ensure mentees receive the support and advice they may need, we need skilled volunteer mentors to guide them!
As a SDPA mentor you would be:
Who can become a mentor?
We welcome mentors with varying levels of experience. If you have more than 5 years of experience as a dermatology PA we would welcome your support as a mentor. You must be a SDPA Fellow member to become a mentor.
What is required of each mentor?
Each mentor would be required to provide the following to their mentees:
1. An introductory email with some details about yourself to kick start the relationship between you and your mentee.
2. Approximately half an hour of advice per week by email in response to mentee’s questions for a period of 3 months. This is a general guideline - we understand everyone is busy, but we ask that you do communicate with your mentee at least once every two weeks during the period of your mentorship.
3. Mentors are welcome to schedule phone calls with their mentees, but are not required to do so.
The SDPA does not encourage in-person meetings outside of an SDPA conference or event. You and your mentee are welcome to meet, however, that decision is your own and outside the recommendations of the program guidelines.
This program is for you! The SDPA is pleased to provide you with yet another avenue to gain training and advice on your path to becoming a dermatology PA, or improving your practice.
Who can become a mentee?
What should I do to prepare?
We urge students and young professionals who are looking to enroll in our Mentorship Program to prepare questions you have about the profession. This will help you in the first few weeks to ask your mentor questions and kick-start your relationship.