Carole J. Bland Outstanding Faculty Mentoring Award

This Medical School faculty mentoring award, established in Dr. Bland’s memory, will be given to a faculty member who has served as an outstanding mentor to other faculty at the University of Minnesota Medical School, and exemplifies Carole Bland's gift and passion for mentoring other faculty.

Mentoring among faculty is a crucial component of faculty development and faculty retention and is an integral part of the collegial atmosphere in the Medical School. We believe that mentoring is critical to encouraging faculty vitality and professional growth. By recognizing the mentoring process, the Medical School recognizes its importance together with scholarship, teaching, and service. This mentoring award is a visible way to recognize the critical value of faculty mentoring in academic medicine.

The Carole J. Bland Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award was created through the generosity of Carole Bland’s family and friends, to honor her and to underscore the commitment of the Medical School to promote mentoring among the faculty. The award is meant to recognize the process by which faculty serve as role models for each other, promoting the professional development of others and creating a supportive, positive working environment.

Definition of Mentor
While the definition of an outstanding mentor is complex, mentoring may be defined in a number of ways:

  • A mentor is a trusted guide who supports and facilitates a protégé's development towards the realization of his/her short and long-term career and life goals.
  • A mentor educates, encourages, protects, and facilitates appropriate risk-taking to teach the values and skills necessary to successfully navigate the organization.
  • A mentor opens access to institutional resources and helps the protégé to develop a network of relationships that might otherwise be unavailable to someone at that level of their career and, in so doing, may risk putting his/her own career “on the line.”
  • A mentor may be a teacher/coach, a sponsor/promoter, a counselor/confidante, a role model/example, a protector/shield, a friend/support.

The recipient(s) will receive a monetary award and a plaque.

Nominations must be received by April 15.

If you have any questions about the Carole J. Bland Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award, please contact the Office of Faculty Affairs at


This is your opportunity to acknowledge a faculty member who, in your judgment, is an exemplary mentor deserving recognition.


This mentoring award is given to a faculty member chosen from the entire Medical School community who has served as an exceptional mentor to other faculty. All full-time Medical School faculty members (including faculty at affiliate sites) are eligible for nomination and all faculty may nominate a candidate for this award. Mentors may often be found outside the protégé's primary department. Both individuals and groups may nominate a candidate. The award may be conferred only once upon an individual.

Review Criteria

The Carole J. Bland Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award Committee will evaluate the nominees and select the awardee. Applications will be evaluated on the strengths of:

  • The mentoring ability of the faculty member
  • The quality of the mentoring relationship
  • The outcome of the mentoring relationship
How to Nominate a Candidate

1. Nominations should be in the form of a letter of no more than two (2) typewritten pages. In preparing a submission, consider using one or more of the following approaches:

  • Writing a testimonial of what your mentor has meant to you
  • Describing specific behaviors and their significance
  • Citing examples of mentoring interactions, or
  • Answering these questions:
    • Who has helped you adjust and flourish at the Medical School?
    • How has s/he been helpful?
    • Why has this been helpful?
2. Letters from three (3) additional individuals who may speak to the candidate's mentoring skills must be included.
3. The candidate's current CV, with detailed mentoring activities, must be included.

Past Winners: