As a Borlaug LEAP Fellow, you are being recognized for your promise and potential as a future leader in the field of agriculture and international development. Your year-long Fellowship supports mentoring by top scientists from a US university and an international agricultural research institute. Now, you need to get the most out of that experience.
You’ve put together your own internship and mentoring plan. Review that plan with your mentors at the start of your Fellowship and make any needed adjustments. Your plan has likely focused on your technical skill needs. Think about the other skills you might need to grow as a professional and leader.
5 Tips for your fellowship year
- Communicate. Establish a protocol for communicating with your mentors. What will be the primary mode of communication? How often will you check-in with each other? How will you facilitate communication between your mentors? Set-up regular meeting times with your mentors to go over your progress. It is easy for your mentors and you to get distracted and pulled in multiple directions. Make time to communicate.
- Document your progress. Set monthly goals. Take notes at your regular meetings with your mentors. Approach your fellowship like a scientist. Collect data on your fellowship activities, analyze the data periodically, and make adjustments to your plan. Sometimes the steps are small and not noticeable in the short-term but by documenting your progress, you will be able to clearly see where you were and where you ended up. (It will also help you write your final fellowship report!)
- Take the time to explore. Don’t forget to think outside the box. Look beyond your field of expertise and discover new ways of doing things. Get out of your customary environment. Try new things. Hands-on training is essential.
- Listen and learn. Listen to your mentors, advisors and colleagues. Learn from their experiences. Ask questions not only about the science but also about their lives.
- Remember Dr. Borlaug. Take a look at Dr. Borlaug’s “Values and Principles”. Read about his life and achievements. Think about how you can be an agent for change.
Don’t forget to visit our FAQs for answers to your questions.