Interdisciplinary Life Science - PULSe Great research is a matter of choice

First-Year Mentoring Program


The First-Year Mentoring Program is designed to provide assistance to incoming PULSe students. The chair is responsible for matching these students with more experienced graduate students to ensure that each new student has a personal student contact who is available to answer questions and to provide help as the new students adjust to graduate school.

Mentor volunteers are solicited annually in May/June from the three most recent cohorts. Matches are made according to students’ countries of originality, undergraduate institutions attended and Training Group interests. Once the matches are completed, the chair informs the mentors of their responsibilities and provide them with their mentee's name and contact information. The chair also notifies the incoming students that a mentor has been assigned.

During the August Orientation Week, the chair hosts a mentoring social. This is the opportunity for the new students to meet and interact with their mentors. Other mentoring activities may be arranged throughout the year to support the program.


The First-Year Mentoring Program is now in its seventh year and continues to be a valuable resource for new students. Friendships are built. Several second-year students volunteer to serve as a mentor to return the favor.


Saeed Salehin Akhand Saeed Salehin Akhand, First-Year Mentoring Chair: Saeed is a second year PULSe Molecular Signaling and Cancer Biology Training Group member working in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology under the direction of Dr. Michael Wendt.  His research involves understanding the role of epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) in driving drug resistance in metastatic breast cancer.  He enjoys volunteering.

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