Finding the Right Mentor for You

Once that you graduate from medical school, all you have to remember to say is, "I do not know how to do this! Please help me."1 Finding the right mentor can really help you along in your journey as a young physician. Here are some tips to finding the right mentor for you:

1) Consider a Military Residency: This provides a great way to travel and meet a wide variety of people. As a military medical professional I have been fortunate to find willing mentors at each and every duty station. For military information visit

2) Look outside of our Medical Profession: Having completed medical school with much the same knowledge-and-awareness gaps as you I was mentored and tutored by dedicated nursing professionals who taught me things from tearing adhesive tape, to spirituality, and even much of timely critical care.2

3) Choose your Mentor while in Medical School: My own personal mentor was distinguished physical anthropologist, Mildred Trotter (1889 - 1991). She was the first woman to become full professor at the Washington University School of Medicine. She spoke softly and humbly of her volunteer service in harm's way in the Pacific War Zone during World War II where she was identifying the remains of our U.S. Service personnel killed in the attack on Pearl Harbor. She helped me focus my willingness to volunteer for Active Military Duty in Asia and on my chosen military career in the U.S. Army Medical Corps.

4) Show your humble respect for your chosen mentor: Please understand that your mentor is giving you much so very much of herself or himself. You can do no less. Your active listening skills are critical at this juncture.

5) Consider telephone or email mentoring3,4: Your mentor does not need to be someone involved with your residency program that you see on a daily basis. By sharing your experience with someone removed from the situation you may be able to gain a different and beneficial perspective.

Joshua B. Grossman, MD, FACP
Colonel (retired) U.S. Army Medical Corps

Doctor Josh is multilingual and welcomes opportunities to work with and to learn from our International Medical Graduates and is available for further mentoring. Please feel contact him at

1. Personal Communication spoken by my most highly distinguished colleague and my very dear friend --the then Dean of a College of Medicine in the South East --when his newly minted medical school graduates had just taken our Hippocratic oath.
2. Grossman, Joshua B., "A Tribute to My Nurse Mentors," All Nursing 2003.
3. Grossman, Z.D. and Grossman, J.B., "Telephone Tutoring …" previously web published =
4. DISCLOSURES: Doctor Zack and Doctor Josh wish to disclose that they are brothers. Doctor Josh wishes to disclose that he has written some 1,000 questions, answers and when requested references and links upon the request of EXAM MASTER CORPORATION and when requested Doctor Josh has written answers to Exam Master Customer Challenges.

To find a mentor visit our Mentoring Database.


Back to November 2010 Issue of IMpact


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