Mentors needed for the IMNIS Minerals and Energy Resources Program in WA By Matthew Flett, WA Section, 23 Jun 2017

The Industry Mentoring Network in STEM (IMNIS) program is an award-winning initiative of the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE).

Working with an Expert Advisory Panel comprised of academic and industry leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), IMNIS aims to foster an innovation culture between industry and academia by connecting STEM PhD students (mentees) with motivated industry leaders (mentors) who can provide advice and connections for industry-based STEM careers.

ATSE has reached out to SPE WA Section to create awareness of the IMNIS program and for interested SPE members within Western Australia and in other sections to consider partaking in the program.

The program: Mentors and mentees meet in person in a professional setting for one hour each month for 12 months. State-level networking events hosted by IMNIS allow mentors and mentees to build rapport, increase their profile and connect more broadly.

IMNIS has successfully piloted in multiple universities in three states and was recognised in 2016 with a prestigious B/HERT Best Higher Education and Training Collaboration Award.

IMNIS provides PhD students the opportunity to increase their understanding of the industry sector, learn the soft skills they need to be successful within the STEM sector, increase their profile, and extend their professional network. IMNIS provides mentors an increased profile, stronger ties with academia and the opportunity to ‘give back’ to our best and the brightest researchers in Australia.

With multiple programs planned, there is also the possibility of engaging more broadly interstate as well.In October 2016, IMNIS received a two-year grant to expand the program nationally in partnership with MTPConnect, ATSE and AusBiotech as well as KPMG and CSL.

With the expansion of the program, ATSE has appointed Dr Marguerite Evans-Galea as the inaugural Executive Director of the IMNIS program. METS Ignited and NERA have also partnered with IMNIS to run programs focussed on Minerals and Energy Resources respectively. In WA, IMNIS is hosting a joint Minerals & Energy Resources program.

An overview of the IMNIS program can be found here: http://imnis.org.au/the-program/. We know that there are significant numbers of PhD students seeking to enter the IMNIS Program and hope that you will join us in this important initiative.We ask that you reach out to your significant network to refer quality mentors, preferably with around 10 years of industry experience, for the program.

Please introduce your colleagues who you feel would be suitable mentors to Dr Evans-Galea (marguerite.galea@imnis.org.au).Please also indicate your own interest in joining the program as a mentor via e-mail to Dr Evans-Galea. Please do not hesitate to contact Dr Evans-Galea if you have any questions about the program.