Frequently Asked Questions: Thinking About Enrolling as a Mentee or Mentor in the S.T.E.P. Program?

Who can participate as a mentee in the S.T.E.P. program?

  • The S.T.E.P. program targets the recruitment and retention of historically under-represented populations into the CSD professions, and is open to students pursuing careers in audiology and speech-language pathology.
  • Undergraduate and graduate students who are or will be enrolled in a communication sciences and disorders programs.
  • As part of our goal to strengthen the S.T.E.P. mentoring community, all mentees and mentors are enrolled in the ASHA S.T.E.P. Community. The S.T.E.P. Community is a place for you to connect, learn, and share with other STEP mentees and mentors. NSSLHA membership is not required to participate in the mentoring program, however, to fully participate in the S.T.E.P. discussions, you must be an ASHA or NSSLHA member. Membership gives you full access to all of the conversations that take place in the ASHA S.T.E.P. Community.

Who can participate as a mentor in the S.T.E.P. program?

An ASHA member in good standing with at least 3 professional years who is willing to commit time, serve as a resource or advisor and assist your mentee with meeting  their goals. 

What are the benefits of S.T.E.P.?

  • A mentor chosen specifically for you
  • Mentoring from a professional audiologist or speech-language pathologist who has experience in the area of interest you are considering and can also help you with your career related goals
  • Full access to the ASHA S.T.E.P. Mentoring Community to discuss issues and trends important to you
    Note: Mentees must be national NSSLHA members to have full access to the ASHA S.T.E.P. Community
    • Networking
    • Program and training resources

    What is required of mentees and mentors who participate in the S.T.E.P. program?

    Mentees/mentors are required to commit to exchanging regular communication with their mentor/mentee during the course of the program. It is okay to continue communicating beyond this period if both the mentee and mentor are agreeable. 

    What are the expectations of the program?

    Mentees and mentors should:

    • Spend time getting to know each other; sharing common interests, goals and values.
    • Discuss expectations, what will be accomplished during the relationship and agree on some common procedures.
    • Establish a communication plan.
    • Set goals and objectives; develop a mentoring action plan.
    • Work towards accomplishing goals and objectives.
    • Evaluate accomplishments and the mentoring relationship. The mentee and mentor may redefine their relationship as colleagues, peers, partners and/or friends.

    How do I sign up to be a mentee or mentor?

    Complete and submit the enrollment form.

    How will mentees and mentors be matched?

    Mentees and mentors are matched based on a personal profile. The major criteria is based on the mentees area of study (audiology, speech-language pathology or speech, language and hearing science) clinical population, employment function, employment facility and specialty area (i.e. articulation, assistive listening devices, or multicultural aspects of practice). In addition, the mentees career goals may serve as a criteria factor. The mentee will be paired with a mentor who closely aligns with the students varied interests. We use many factors to make the best possible matches, however we are not able to match based on geographic location. 

    How much time will mentoring take?

    We estimate that mentors will spend an average of one hour per week mentoring, but this will vary depending on the pair.

    What about confidentiality?

    ASHA assumes that participants in the program will abide the Code of Ethics and appropriate professional codes of conduct. Mentees and mentors will be asked to keep the messages they receive and sensitive information in confidence.

    Do mentees and mentors ever meet?

    S.T.E.P. is designed to be an e-mentoring program (i.e., mentees and mentors will communicate via regular e-mail exchanges). Of course, mentees and mentors may make arrangements to meet at the ASHA Convention, state association conventions,or other professional meetings and social opportunities. Face-to-face meetings are not a formal part of the program but may have a positive influence on your mentoring relationship.

    What if there are problems between a mentee and a mentor?

    Please contact your mentoring coaches at if you have not heard from your mentor/mentee, if you have questions or comments about your mentoring relationship, or if you are uncomfortable with any aspect of your mentoring relationship. We will help to re-connect you with your mentor/mentee, address your questions or comments, or re-match you with a different mentor/mentee, if necessary.

    How can I get my peers and/or colleagues involved?

    Direct them to the S.T.E.P. information on the ASHA website.

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