NMC Mentors

Studying physics can be a solitary experience for some, especially for students from historically marginalized and minoritized backgrounds who may not "see" themselves in the culture of a physics department. Having someone who watches out for them, gives guidance, points them toward the appropriate resources, and just listens to them can make the difference between success and the student deciding physics is just not for them.

As a mentor, you have access to resources, networks and a life of experiences that can be a tremendous aid to students. Though there are many best practices for mentors, perhaps the most important are: care about your mentee(s) and help open doors to their success.


Anyone with a degree in physics or related field and is not currently a graduate student is welcome as a mentor in the NMC. Additionally, mentors should:

  • Have current roles in academia, industry, government labs, and beyond 
  • Be committed to providing support to Black/African American, Latinx, and Indigenous students


When you join NMC as a mentor you can:

  • Join a network of mentors across physics and related fields who are committed to supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Attend workshops and access resources related to mentoring and supporting students
  • Share your experience and expertise at virtual and in-person NMC convenings
  • Contribute to addressing the significant disparity in educational achievement for historically underrepresented students, by supporting students through a formal mentoring relationship


Once matched, you will meet with your mentee(s) on a regular basis to support them through topics, such as: the development of their identity as a physicist, career or educational plans, support with financial or personal difficulties, and more.

Additionally, NMC mentors will:

  • Attend workshops and trainings hosted by the NMC
  • Volunteer to support virtual and in-person events for NMC mentees
  • Support the growth of the NMC by identifying one or more potential mentees and inviting them to register with the APS NMC program each year
  • When prompted, provide a updates on each of your mentee’s progress once per year
  • Provide feedback to APS on ways to improve the program through annual surveys and evaluations

Mentoring timeline

The NMC accepts new mentors once a year during the Fall. Once you join the NMC as a mentor, you can choose to mentor up to five mentees at a time.

Mentees join the NMC on a rolling basis and once they join, they can search and request up to three mentors. When a mentee wishes to request you as a mentor, you will receive a notification, and you may accept or decline that request for any reason.

Within a week of being matched, the mentee will contact you to establish an initial meeting. After the first meeting you and your mentee should establish a regular schedule to meet and discuss progress.

At the end of each academic year, mentees may choose to remain matched with the same mentor(s) for the next academic year.