College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Anderson kicks off 2015-2016 staff mentoring program year

2015 imPROVE you meeting

Participants in the College of Engineering’s imPROVE you Staff Mentoring Program were inspired and entertained during the program’s first meeting of the year.

2015 imPROVE you meeting
Clayton Anderson, former NASA astronaut and faculty fellow in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, talks to the 2015-2016 imPROVE you participants.

Clayton Anderson, former NASA astronaut and faculty fellow in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, shared his journey of living out a childhood dream to become an astronaut despite multiple rejections. Throughout the presentation, he joked with the audience about life in an intensely competitive program along with the oddities of living in space. He also offered more personal anecdotes about how life-changing events like the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster were for him. His message of determination and persistence as well as never forgetting and thanking the people you meet along your journey resounded with the 19 mentoring dyads in attendance.

The college’s imPROVE you program offers staff members an avenue to share knowledge, practice and gain leadership skills, and network among colleagues. While mentoring can mean different things to different people, the college’s program focuses on building relationships that enhance career satisfaction, strengthening commitment to the college and university, and providing insight for performing work in a more productive and efficient manner.

Over the course of a year, mentors and mentees attend formal programming provided by the college as well as personal mentoring sessions to help participants grow both personally and professionally. The program’s steering committee is excited to bring another year of programming.

In addition to Clayton Anderson, the participants will hear messages about leadership from Jamie Pollard, ISU athletics director, and using their full potential from Nancy Franz, professor emeritus in the School of Education. The program also offers training sessions for mentors, a social/networking event, and graduation celebration for all participants.

The ability to grow and sustain this program is possible due to the support from the college’s leadership and engagement of staff members. If you’d like more information about the program, contact the imPROVE you steering committee at