SPSP Early Career (EC) members play a critical role in bringing new perspectives and ideas to SPSP and the wider academic community. Current EC members come from a variety of backgrounds, work within various academic, government, and industry positions, and have heterogeneous career goals and support needs.

Meeting the mentorship needs of such a diverse body of ECs is a key priority for our committee and requires a tailored approach. In response to EC members' feedback and suggestions to have more formal mentorship opportunities from other social-personality psychologists, in July 2022 our committee officially launched SPSP Early Career Mentoring Program – Building Early Career Opportunities via Mentoring Experiences (BECOME)!

BECOME will increase access to mentorship for our community of diverse ECs based on their identities, nationalities, geographic locations, and institutional backgrounds. This is not a one-size fits all program. Mentees are carefully paired with mentors who can speak to their unique mentoring needs.

Each cohort of mentees participates in a year-long virtual program that includes one-on-one individual meetings, small group meetings, and large group cohort meetings. Mentees get to meet with their mentor at least 3 times a year, and with a small group of peers for an additional 3 sessions. During large group meetings, we will invite outside speakers to discuss and share advice on a specific topic that interests mentees broadly (e.g., developing a research plan with tenure/promotion in mind, building professional connections, and how to get the most out of mentoring programs like BECOME).

This year, the BECOME program started in July 2022 and is being coordinated by Dr. Veronica Lamarche. We received overwhelming interest for our inaugural round, attracting 64 complete applications from mentees with diverse backgrounds. We were able to support and match 29 EC mentees with 10 mid-career and senior mentors this year, and are looking to expand the size of future cohorts.

At the SPSP Annual Convention, incoming and outgoing BECOME mentors and mentees will be invited to celebrate at the Kick-off/Reunion Gathering (in person). This first in-person BECOME event will happen at the upcoming convention in Atlanta (February 23–25). The event will celebrate the "wins" (research, teaching, awards, community building, etc.) of BECOME mentees and offer an opportunity for the community of mentors and mentees to gather and make new connections. Funding will be available to support conference attendance for mentees who would otherwise be unable to attend.

Interested in participating as a Mentee? The next application cycle will open in December 2022 and the program will begin in March 2023. Stay tuned and check out our program web page.

Interested in being a Mentor? Sign up here

You will answer a few questions about your academic background and the topics for which you feel most comfortable mentoring. Mentors receive an honorarium of $400 for participation.

If you have any questions or suggestions for BECOME or in general for the SPSP EC Committee, please feel free to reach out to co-chairs: Franki Kung (email: frankikung@purdue.edu) or Sarah Huff (email: sarah.t.huff@du.edu)

To learn more, view the full overview of the BECOME program and guidelines.