College of Liberal Arts

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The College of Liberal Arts offers the following award and programs related to faculty mentorship:

Faculty Mentoring Award

The College of Liberal Arts recognizes excellence in faculty mentoring through the following award.

  • The COLA Dean's Faculty Mentoring Award

    The College of Liberal Arts Dean's Faculty Mentoring Award recognizes an assistant, associate, full, or professional track faculty member who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to and excellence in mentoring fellow faculty at UT-Austin. This annual award honors faculty for their leadership, programming, research, and guidance in the area of mentoring that supports other tenure track, tenured, and professional track faculty members.

    Selection Criteria

    • Full-time faculty members with an official academic appointment are eligible to be nominated. A faculty member must have a continuing appointment at The University of Texas at Austin in the year subsequent to their selection. 
    • Visiting faculty and current administrators* are not eligible for this award. 
    • Nominees should have served as a faculty mentor or created mentoring networks at UT-Austin, in a formal or informal capacity, to several junior and/or mid-career faculty over a continuous period and demonstrated success in the areas they mentor (e.g., research, teaching). 
    • A demonstrated commitment to fostering the intellectual, creative, scholarly, and professional growth of their mentees so that they may function effectively and with measurable success at the University of Texas and at the national and/or international level. 

    *Center directors, department chairs, deans, associate deans, etc.


    Award: $5,000


    • A letter of nomination (no longer than 2 pages) describing the nominee's achievements in mentoring faculty. This statement should include details about their contributions to faculty mentorship. This statement might also address any scholarly contributions or research on the field of mentoring.
    • Supplemental material should include 1 supporting letter from a faculty colleague, collaborator, and/or postdoctoral fellow, that has been mentored by the nominee. 
    • The nominee's C.V. that includes URLs for any relevant websites or publications.
    • Nominations (including self-nominations) are due Monday, February 26, 2024 by 5 pm.
    • Submit material to UT Box Faculty Mentorship Submission folder.


    Questions:Lisa B. ThompsonAdvisor to the Dean for Faculty Mentoring & Support

    Previous Recipients:

    Dr. Laura Gutiérrez  2022
    Dr. Stephanie Holmsten 2023


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The following programs were created to support faculty members in their mentorship endeavors. 

  • COLA Faculty Peer Mentoring Circles

    Information about disciplinary or institutional norms and practices is often communicated to faculty by their peers. Aside from career advice, peer networking can also address psychosocial needs, increase collegiality, normalize challenges, and reduce feelings of isolation. Notably, peer mentoring can be an effective form of mentoring for junior faculty, professional faculty, and mid-career faculty.

    In order to foster a more robust culture of peer mentoring and networking in the College, the Advisor to the Dean for Faculty Mentoring & Support will host a series of gatherings to facilitate connections among recently hired faculty. COLA Faculty Peer Mentoring events will also include presentations by press editors, department chairs, center directors, administrators, and senior faculty, about topics such as publishing, research funding, tenure and promotion, and work life balance. Faculty will also have the opportunity to meet each other and form their own peer mentoring groups based on common interests, needs, and goals. Peer Mentoring Circles can be comprised of faculty across-rank and field, and based on topics such as writing, scholarly interests, teaching, work life balance, or a combination of topics. Peer Mentoring Circles in the College of Liberal Arts will meet throughout the academic year at regular intervals decided upon by the group members. Peer Mentoring Circles can continue for consecutive years depending participant interest.

    At the end of the academic year COLA will host a reception for Peer Mentoring Circles where they will share what they’ve learned from each other with the other groups of COLA faculty. At the reception they will also complete a formal evaluation of their experience with the program and make suggestions for improvements.

  • COLA Faculty Mentoring Fellows

    In the fall of 2023, the College will launch the COLA Faculty Mentoring Fellows program.  Distinguished professors will serve as a pool of COLA-wide mentors for faculty seeking additional support and mentoring beyond their home department. The Advisor to the Dean for Faculty Mentoring & Support under the direction of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will recruit selected faculty to serve for a two-year term as mentors for COLA tenure-track and tenured faculty who are not matched with a mentor in their home department. During the spring 2023 semester, faculty may also apply to become Dean’s Faculty Mentoring Fellows for the following academic year.

    If matched with a mentee, COLA Faculty Mentoring Fellows will receive modest monetary support ($1,500) to be used for research and scholarship, as well as incidentals associated with mentorship. During the selection process, each mentor will create a profile and be selected by tenured-faculty mentees based on their professional needs, interests, and short-term and long-term goals (topics/focus on issues such as grant writing, publication, research, teaching, work life balance, etc.). At the end of each academic year, mentees and mentors will both complete a formal evaluation about their experience with the program, as well as share their recommendations.

    2023-2025 Mentor Cohort

    Mentor Name Department
    Jason Abrevaya Economics
    Michael Roy Hames Garcia Mexican American and Latina/o Studies
    Lisa L. Moore English; LGBTQ Studies
    Martha G. Newman History; Religious Studies
    Becky Pettit Sociology
    Bartholomew Sparrow Government
    Jeremi Suri History
    Sean Theriault Government
    Kevin J. A. Thomas African and African Diaspora Studies
    Deavid S. Yeager Psychology


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