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NM EPSCoR Mentor Awards

The NM EPSCoR Mentor Award recognizes NM SMART Grid Center team members who demonstrate excellence in supporting students’ academic, research, and career endeavors, and in creating inclusive environments for all students.

Excellent Mentors

  • have strong interpersonal and professional relationships with their mentees, demonstrating personal traits of accessibility, honesty, empathy, consistency, and patience.
  • tailor their mentoring styles and content to their mentee’s identity, including adjustments due to culture, ethnicity, gender, and/or age.
  • demonstrate open-mindedness and create an inclusive environment for diverse students.
  • work to advance their mentee’s academic, research, and professional goals in directions most desired by that individual, including advising in research, promoting opportunities outside of the classroom, assisting with successful transitions, and paying attention to the pragmatic aspects of career development.

Adapted from Rackham Graduate School (2015); Burroughs Wellcome Fund & HHMI (2006)

Nominations for the NM EPSCoR Mentor award are accepted each spring. Nominees must be a faculty or staff member, post doc, or graduate student who is an active participant in the NM SMART Grid Center.


Contact Selena Connealy at 505-217-5605 or

Mentor Awardees

2020 / RII 5

We are delighted to announce this year’s NM EPSCoR Mentor Award recipients—Dr. Olga Lavrova and Dr. Ali Bidram. Nominated by their mentees, both of this year’s recipients stand out for their exceptional efforts to build strong professional and interpersonal relationships with students; advance their mentees’ academic, research, and professional goals; and create inclusive environments for diverse students. Please join us in recognizing Dr. Lavrova and Dr. Bidram for their outstanding work in mentoring the students who will define New Mexico’s diverse future workforce.

2019 / RII 5

We are pleased to announce the 2019 NM EPSCoR Mentor Award winners—Dr. David Mitchell and Dr. Satyajayant (Jay) Misra. Both were nominated by mentees and demonstrated characteristics of excellent mentors, including strong professional and interpersonal relationships; working to advance their mentees’ academic, research, and professional goals; and creating inclusive environments for diverse students.

2018 / RII 5
We are proud to announce this year's recipients of the NM EPSCoR Mentoring Award: Catherine Brewer, Assistant Professor at New Mexico State University; Marty Kirk, Distinguished Professor at the University of New Mexico; and Juchao Yan, Professor at Eastern New Mexico University. Mentors are able to create a professional and social relationship with students that encourage them to take the next step in their careers through listening, advising, supporting, providing feedback, increasing students’ networks, and solving problems, to name a few roles and characteristics. Click to learn more about these outstanding mentors.
2017 / RII 5

On Thursday, April 27th at our All Hands Meeting, we recognized two faculty members with the inaugural NM EPSCoR Mentoring Award. The NM EPSCoR Mentoring Award is designed to recognize two NM EPSCoR participants who not only build relationships with students and support their academic, research, and career endeavors, but also work to create inclusive environments for our diverse students. I was honored to be the emcee for the Ceremony. The Award and Ceremony would not have been possible if it weren’t for three groups of people.