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Mentorship

Virtual

Any AIR member in good standing can apply to work with a mentor for one-on-one support with your skills or career every two years. AIR’s Mentorship program benefits both emerging producers still developing as well as mid-career and veteran producers seeking to refine and enhance their repertoire of tools.

Members have worked with mentors to develop strategies for pitching to a specific outlet, get focused feedback on a show or episode, improving interviewing techniques or research and investigative skills. Mentors can help you navigate the job search process or be more strategic about networking and cultivating relationships. AIR staff will guide and “match” prospective mentees with a mentor that best suits their goals for the mentorship. Mentors commit to spend a total of four remote hours in one-on-one meetings with mentees. 

Here are a few things a mentor can help with:

  • Support with pitching to a particular outlet
  • Feedback on podcast episodes
  • Guidance or coaching to help strengthen interview techniques
  • Pointers to improve research and investigative skills
  • Navigating the job search process
  • Cultivating relationships and networking effectively.

 

Apply for a Mentor

You are welcome to apply for a mentor whether you are new to radio and podcasting or a veteran producer. 

AIR members are asked to contribute a mentorship fee of up to $500 to cover the cost of compensating your mentor. We do have limited scholarships available to members who need  support in order to access this benefit.

Apply to Be a Mentor 

We value the rich expertise of our mentors. Whether you’ve been in the industry a long time or have a niche set of skills, we’d love to include you in our roster of industry experts. We work with each prospective mentee to find a mentor suited to their needs. 

As a mentor you commit to four remote contact hours over approximately 90 days. Mentors are compensated $500 for each completed mentorship. If you think you can help a peer succeed in the industry, we’d love to have you as a mentor!

Questions?

For more information on the mentorship program, please contact AIR's New Voices Director Tran Vu at [email protected].

FAQ

I just joined AIR. How soon before I can apply for a mentorship?

AIR requires a three month waiting period before applying for a mentorship.

How can I apply for a mentor?

Fill out an application and AIR will be in touch within a week.

How long in between mentorships do I have to wait before participating again?

Preference will be given to those who are participating for the first time but members can apply as often as they like. Please note that we often maintain a waiting list.

I received a travel stipend from AIR to attend a conference or workshop within the last two years. Am I still eligible to receive mentorship support?

We do our best to distribute opportunity and resources but encourage members to apply for any program or service that is of benefit, whether or not a member has already benefited from participation before. If timing and urgency don't align, we will do our best to provide a direct referral outside of the Mentorships program.

Do I have to have a specific project that I’m working on in order to receive mentoring?

Yes. We find that mentorships are more focused and effective if the mentee has a project or specific goals to frame the engagement.

What if I don’t live near an AIR mentor?

No worries. Most of our mentorships occur remotely over email, phone and video conference. In situations where mentoring is best conducted in person, AIR makes every effort to find a mentor who is within traveling distance to the mentee.

Do I have to pay for this?

It depends. AIR does have a limited number of support funds for mentorships. AIR will evaluate who is eligible for support on a case-by-case basis.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, AIR is waiving all mentorship fees so that all mentees can participate. All mentors will be paid.

We are asking those who are able to consider a donation to the Freelance Audio Fund (https://www.freelanceaudio.fund/). 100% of donations will go back to freelancers.

How much time do we have to complete the mentorship?

Mentorships must be completed within 90 days.

Who is responsible for getting in touch and ensuring that the mentorship moves forward?

The mentee is responsible for starting things off and we recommend that the mentee establish a timeline and clear set of goals to achieve over the course of the mentorship before engaging the mentor. The overall process will be facilitated by AIR.

What if I have trouble reaching my mentor or mentee?

Please contact AIR and direct facilitation will be provided.

How long does it take for AIR to find a match for me?

We do our best and it generally takes one week. A number of factors - timing, specific expertise and geography - have resulted in longer periods of time to resolve but we do not anticipate the process to go beyond one month.

How can I become a mentor?

Apply!

AIR gives precedence to members in good standing but welcomes anyone interested to apply. Our priority, however, is to establish the strongest match between mentor and mentee.

What if more than time is needed?

If mentors and mentees wish to continue beyond four hours, we recommend you do so independently. AIR recommends a sliding scale of $75 to $150 per hour and can be provided facilitation if needed.

As a mentor, what do I need to do in order to receive payment?

After contact hours are completed, mentors are asked to complete an evaluation prior to submitting an invoice. The contract agreement will give specific instruction for invoicing.