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Edgar Meyhofer

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Mentoring Plan for PhD Students

Communication and Meetings

How would you describe your advising style? Does your approach vary over the course of a student's progress within their degree?

Mostly informal and in-person through one-on-one and group meetings. My goal  is to initially integrate new students into ongoing research efforts for effective learning and productivity, and as they mature over their first 1 - 2 years into more independent researchers to develop their dissertation project.

What is the best way/technology for students to contact you? Are there time frames in which students should expect to hear from you?

In-person, email, phone

How often do you plan to meet with students one-on-one (be as specific as possible, it's okay to describe multiple styles that may vary with student needs)? Is an agenda required? How long are meetings?

One to multiple times per week, depending on progress and challenges 

Do you have regular group meetings? What does student participation look like in a group meeting?

Yes. Students present progress on their own work, presentations for upcoming meetings, cutting-edge papers in  their area and actively participate in discussions

Research and Teaching Expectations

Describe your students' primary area(s) of responsibility and expectations (e.g., reading peer-reviewed literature, in-lab working hours, etc.).

Students are expected to work full-time on all aspects of their research projects

How do you decide authorship and/or authorship order?

Through discussion and consensus with all actively contribution authors

Do you ask students in your group to serve as a GSI over the course of their program?

Yes. I believe this is an important experience, particularly for student with interests in academic careers. 

Do you have general expectations for graduation?

For a student to graduate they must have conducted independent research commensurate with the standards of U-M. One each way to demonstrate this is via peer-reviewed publications.

Are you supportive of your students going on internships? If so, is there a time of year that is best? How many internships can they do?

Yes, as long as this makes a positive contributions to a student's goal(s). However, I should point out (given the fundamental nature of most research in the lab, that few students in the group have sought such an opportunity in the past

Opportunities for Feedback

How do you provide students with feedback regarding overall progress, research activities, etc.?

Typically verbally in one-on-one meetings

How far in advance of a deadline should a student expect to provide written work for feedback, such as publication drafts?

This depends very much on the character of the written work. In some cases, a week may be sufficient, in the case of a publication aiming for a high impact, peer-reviewed journal we typically expect may rounds of iterations between all authors and the question does not capture who the process unfolds. From meetings, it will be very clear to the students what the timeline is and what the expectations are.

How do you solicit feedback from your students?

During in-person, one-on-one meetings

Conference Attendance

Which meetings do your students generally attend? What funding is available to attend these meetings?

Generally national meetings most relevant to the student's research. Funding sources include applications to Rackham and externally sponsored grants.

Time Away from Campus

Discuss expectations regarding vacations and time away from campus and how best to plan for them. What is the time-frame for notification regarding anticipated absences?

Annual vacations should be  2 - 3 weeks and should be coordinated with others to minimize disruptions to group efforts. If a vacation or absence is planned this should be done 1 month in advance. 

Are there specific standard times that students in your group generally take vacation?

In the summer and over the holiday season 

What do you do to facilitate students taking time off (e.g., do you proactively encourage people to take vacation after major deadlines)?

I do encourage students to take some vacation time to recharge, particularly those that are working extremely hard. I leave it up to them to pick the best time.

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