The KAUST Mentoring Program for Postdocs aims to enhance the postdoctoral experience and compliment the mentorship provided by their supervisors (principal investigator), by offering postdocs the opportunity to interact with faculty or other professionals who can further support and guide them in aspects of their career and personal development.

The program aims to:

  • Support professional development
  • Assist in future career planning
  • Provide guidance with job searching and applications, developing personal skills, work – life balance and networking

The process is driven by the Mentee. The Mentor will help the Mentee navigate a pathway to achieving their goals, drawing on their knowledge and experience. As well as being personally rewarding, the Mentor can co-benefit by learning things about themselves, their management styles as well as new methodologies, technologies, innovations, and other research areas. 

The program is offered twice per academic year (September – January and February – June), with the option of extending the mentorship with the same mentor/mentee for one round if needed. Mentee – mentor pairs are encouraged to meet regularly. With the mutual agreement of the mentee/mentor, meetings may be semi – formal with pre – set agendas that the mentee will share with the mentor in advance or informal discussions over coffee/lunch. Meetings can be in person or online because of Covid concerns and acknowledgment of people’s travel schedules.

Mentoring Program Annual Rounds: September – January | February – June

A Call for applications will open approximately one month before each round. 

Both mentors and mentees need to complete an online application form.

Postdocs will be informed via email for the opening of the call and the deadline to submit the application form. 

Before completing the application form and to be eligible, mentees are required to complete the Individual Development Plan (IDP) found at:

The Office of Postdoctoral and Research Affairs (OPRA) will perform all the administrative work and based on the results of the applications will match mentees and mentors. Even though the program lasts 5-9 months, it can potentially be the basis for a longer professional relationship between the mentor and the mentee.

*Applying does not guarantee that one will become a mentor/mentee. Placement is reliant on participation.

*Applicants who did not meet the round’s deadline will be consider for the next round of the program.  

*Mentors who have already applied for previous rounds, do not need to complete the application form again.

Challenging times call for strong mentorship. 

The global higher education ecosystem is facing major disruption, which impacts the career paths of PhD scientists. Those who want to continue an academic career track especially need to be more competitive than ever. Growing numbers of PhD graduates are pursuing careers outside of academia. Regardless of their path, the next generation of PhD-trained scientist will benefit from a strong network of supportive colleagues and mentors. 

KAUST cultivates a supportive intellectual community. KAUST faculty provide outstanding mentorship to their students, and many faculty put forth extra effort to mentor students who may not work directly together with them. 

The KAUST Mentoring Program for Postdocs continues in that spirit, providing support and guidance for postdoctoral fellows, helping them with professional and personal development and navigate the uncertain terrain of contemporary careers.