About the Space4Women Mentorship Program

Purpose of the program

The Space4Women program consists of two primary activities: (1) the Mentorship Program and (2) the Space4Women professional network. Recognizing that having role models of women in STEM and space may also help to reduce the "leaky pipeline" effect - where girls and women leave STEM subjects or the space sector as they progress through their careers – both the Mentorship Program and the Space4Women Network provide women and girls with access to role models in space and STEM fields from a diversity of regions and professional backgrounds.

While the Space4Women Network is open to all who wish to contribute as members (information about the Space4Women Network coming soon), the Mentorship Program is a more structured and formalized program with specific guidelines for participation on behalf of the mentors and mentees. The Mentorship Program matches mentees with experienced mentors who are established in their field and who are committed to gender equity in the space sector and helping mentees achieve their goals.

Mentors in the Space4Women Mentorship Program are selected from leaders and professionals in the space industry and represent a variety of fields and geographic regions. Together, these mentors support women and girls around the world, and share their expertise, knowledge, and experiences to build an environment where women and girls play an active and equal role in space science, technology, innovation, and exploration.

 

Benefits of participation

Mentors are an important part of encouraging women and girls to pursue STEM education and careers in the space sector. Women and girls need the support of industry leaders - both men and women - to help break down barriers so that they can enter into careers and into decision-making and leadership positions in the space sector. At the same time, women and girls can benefit from the support of other women at all levels within the industry who can share their experiences and connections, provide guidance for career development, and support growth of women in the workforce. Benefits of participation in this program include:

  • Mentees receive important career and educational feedback in line with their personal goals for access to and development in the space sector
  • Mentees grow their professional network and make connections with established leaders in the space sector
  • Mentors gain connections to talent in the pipeline and future space sector professionals from around the world
  • Mentors contribute substantively to increasing access to the space sector for women
  • Mentors and mentees have the opportunity to share their initiatives and commitments to gender equality and access to education through UNOOSA and Space4Women social media and outreach campaigns
  • Mentors and mentees are automatically included in the global Space4Women Network and join a global community of space professionals from the private and public sectors

 

Mentorship Program requirements

Anyone of any gender with an interest in space and a willingness to support women and girls in space education and careers is welcome to submit an application - either as a mentee seeking career and educational advice and support, or as a mentor.

 

Who is eligible as a mentor?

  • Mentor candidate must be professionally involved in the space sector or a related field. Applications are encouraged from a diversity of space-related career paths, including: engineering, communications, the arts, business, policy, science, medicine, and law.
  • Mentors must complete an application, mentor orientation, and submit a signed Code of Conduct form.
  • Mentor candidate must be able to commit to a 1 year (beginning 1 April) term of appointment.

 

Mentor requirements

  • Attend the 6 mentor check-in meetings (held every second month virtually by UNOOSA).
  • Communicate to UNOOSA at the time of selection the number of mentees you are able to work with. You must ensure you have the time and capacity to fulfill the commitments for every mentee you take on.
  • Complete and sign the mentor agreement.
  • Sign the Mentorship Program Code of Conduct and follow the rules and expectations throughout the duration of your appointment. 
  • Mentor must make initial contact with mentee within one week of matching.
  • Mentor and mentee must commit to a format (email, virtual meeting, in-person meeting) and frequency (monthly, bimonthly, etc.) of communication and make every effort to attend and engage during these scheduled times.  
  • Complete goal-setting worksheet with the mentee.
  • Provide guidance and support to the mentee in achieving their goals and foster an atmosphere of open communication.
  • Submit a year-end report to UNOOSA at the end of your appointment.

 

Who is eligible as a mentee?

  • High school students and older (including early professionals and professionals interested in changing career tracks) are eligible to apply as a mentee.
  • Applications are particularly encouraged from mentee candidates without access to other space industry fellowship or mentoring programs in their educational system or region.
  • Mentee candidates must complete an application and indicate their interest in being matched with specific mentors.

 

Mentee requirements

  • Attend the mentor/ mentee check-ins (held every three months virtually by UNOOSA).
  • Complete and sign the mentee agreement.
  • Follow the Mentorship Program code of conduct and UN branding guidelines throughout the duration of your time in the Mentorship Program. 
  • Mentor and mentee must commit to a format (email, virtual meeting, in-person meeting) and frequency (monthly, bimonthly, etc.) of communication and make every effort to attend and engage during these scheduled times.  
  • Complete your goal-setting worksheet with your mentor, your anticipated length of time in the mentorship program, and discuss your objectives and challenges with them.
  • Prepare for meetings with your mentor and seek advice, feedback, and direction from them.
  • Be responsive to emails and communications from your mentor and let the Mentorship Program staff know if you are having difficulties communicating with your mentor.
  • Complete a year-end survey and submit it to UNOOSA at the end of the program.

Apply to be a mentee

Applications to be matched with a Space4Women Network Mentor as a mentee in the 2020-2021 cycle are now closed.
Mentee applications for the 2021-2022 cycle will open in early April. Please check back for more information at that time.

Apply to be a Space4Women Network Mentor

Mentor Program Guidelines

Please click here to view the Space4Women Mentor Program Guidelines and Code of Conduct. 

Mentor Program Guidelines

Code of Conduct