PAWAS Mentorship

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ABOUT MENTORSHIP

Mentorship is a bidirectional developmental relationship where a more experienced person guides  one who is less experienced.

Mentorship helps the mentee or protégé (one being mentored) to make well-informed decisions about their careers and/or personal choices.  By having a mentor, one has access to a guide, teacher and friend alongside a breadth of experience  and the networks that the mentor has access to. Through the process of mentorship one is empowered to take responsibility and ownership for one’s life and career choices alongside developing one’s leadership skills.

Significance of mentorship in PAWAS

There is still a very low enrollment and high attrition rate for women in surgical specialties in most African countries. A platform to link with and exchange information and obtain support & mentorship from other surgeons, regionally and globally, remains critical in helping to address and mitigate the unique challenges faced.

Mentorship is critical to all stages of one’s career and frequently influences one’s advancement in one’s chosen career. Mentorship opportunities helps to cultivate a growing interest and ambition in Surgery and foster a greater retention of residents in these specialties.

  • A few concerns women face regarding the field of surgery are:
  • Whether or not to take up a surgical profession
  • What type of surgical specialty to consider
  • Which career path to follow after registration as a consultant
  • Prospects of success as a female surgeon trying to achieve a work life balance.

Mentorship is critical in providing support and ongoing feedback for decisions made at every step of one’s surgical journey.

How can I get involved?

Become a Full Time Mentor to students to introduce them to the field of surgery. Through this process one will be matched to a group of students to help navigate their path of interest to surgery. One can also opt to Mentor Residents in Training and provide a supportive system for them as they continue their surgical journey and transition to consultants. One can also opt for an Occasional Mentorship Role at PAWAS events and training workshops. Regardless of the stage you are at in training one has the potential to become a mentor.

By becoming a PAWAS mentor, you have the opportunity to

  • Contribute to the development of the next generation of surgeons
  • Develop your leadership skills
  • Develop your potential for effective communication that is critical in clinical practice
  • Enhance your understanding of surgery through other mentors and workshop facilitators at your disposal
  • Gain access to the PAWAS network and networking opportunities
  • Become a part of a global movement that is embracing women in all fields of science and knowing that you are helping to facilitate that change.
  • For more information contact mentorship@africanwomensurgeons.org or volunteer here on our website.