HBA Impact: Finding Yourself through Mentoring

With registrations to the HBA Europe Mentoring Program closing soon, we wanted to give a flavor to what the program offers by providing you with real experiences from past participants.

Having a mentor has proven to be the driver behind people succeeding in their careers – more than hard work, talent and intelligence. Mentorship offers opportunities to gain knowledge, tap into an objective resource for advice, professionally grow outside employer and learn from industry-specific experiences.

This is exactly what Ana Jimenez, a mentee in the 2017 mentoring program, experienced.

Tell us a little bit about yourself. What inspires you?

Being surrounded by passionate people. I find it kind of contagious and such situations make my brain work and inspire my creativity and thought. Especially when the people I am with are from completely different disciplines, working on things that I normally do not do or even think about doing in my daily life.

Why did you decide to join the HBA mentoring program?

I got to know about the mentoring program four years ago when I joined the HBA. Since then, I have met several women and also men that participated in the program and benefitted from it. I knew that I was going to need the help of a mentor to figure out what to do after finishing my PhD, so I enrolled the year before finishing so I had time to get ready beforehand.

What did you learn from your experience as a mentee with the HBA mentoring program?

When joining the mentoring program, I thought I was going to learn about career pathways for molecular biologists, which I did, but most importantly I learn about myself.

My mentor often suggested to me several reads and exercises by which I got to know myself better. With time, I understood that it is a basic requirement for anything that one wants to do in life: knowing oneself. Being aware of my strengths and weaknesses and what I like or dislike.

How did you apply the mentoring experience to your work and personal life, if at all?

I think that by now I am more confident, and I push myself to do things that I feared to do before.

Why are such programs important and why should people register for the HBA mentoring program?

Mentoring programs are important because they are the way to formalize a commitment. Many professionals, young or more senior, have the desire to change or improve something about their careers at some point. People expend time researching, reading things in the internet and trying to make up their minds and get, supposedly, ready for those changes. However, without the guidance of a mentor, one needs to make a huge effort and expend a lot of time in trying to find the solution to his or her problems alone. Formalizing your commitment and getting a more experienced person involved in your cause makes things much easier and it prevent you from flying blind.

If you want to accelerate your career and enjoy the benefits mentorship offers, register for the HBA mentoring program here – but hurry, registration closes 28 September.



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