New faculty are often not prepared for a career in academia, and the transition can be challenging. They often come from practice environments where work expectations are clearly delineated.
Traditional mentoring programs typically pair new with experienced faculty members who are expected to provide guidance and advice. Results of the hierarchical dyad method have been mixed.
Three generations of faculty formed a team composed of a tenured, a midcareer, and a new faculty member. The midcareer educator was better suited to help the novice prepare to teach, as they had recently been through the process, whereas the tenured faculty member was able to provide scholarship support to both.
Providing new faculty with 2 mentors in a constellation format, along with the opportunity to network during structured mentoring meetings, contributed to a smooth onboarding of new faculty and provided scholarship support for the midcareer faculty member.