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Join the largest industry wide mentorship program for food & ag

Applications are now open

The WFA Mentorship Program is now accepting applications for 2022!

Along with our supporting partner, Alltech, we are building on the success of the 2021 program to continue our support of women in ag, promote a more equitable workplace environment and further cultivate the WFA community.

WFA and Alltech invite you to join other professionals from around the world as we connect women across the agri-food industry with mentors to champion their career success and help shape the next generation of leaders in the industry. The mentorship program facilitates meaningful conversations and mutual support while providing a valuable networking experience.

What is the significance of mentorship to women in food and agriculture?

In 2019, WFA and Alltech partnered to launch the Women in Food & Ag Survey, which has consistently revealed that a lack of mentorship is a barrier to success for women working within the agri-food industry. We want to do something about that! To help address the gap, we are converting insight into action through the Women in Food & Ag Mentorship Program.

The 2021 Mentorship Program

In February 2021, WFA matched 120 mentors and mentees to support women seeking to develop their careers within the food and agriculture sector. From farmers to CEOs, and scientists to ag-tech innovators, participants were matched with counterparts that complemented their aims and work experience.

The feedback from our initial cohort has been overwhelmingly positive and informs the way forward as we continue to provide an enriching mentorship experience for all participants.

Testimonials from our 2021 participants…

 “I am so grateful to be a part of this program and meeting my mentee. It was the perfect match up and I’m so incredibly proud of [my mentee]!”

 “It’s been an amazing success so far with great new relationships forming!”

 “I’ve already connected with my mentee and think she’s FABULOUS. I’m really looking forward to this new adventure”

 “I have to say, it’s really worthwhile and it’s going exceptionally well so far. I’m very pleased to have the opportunity to be a mentor and to be able to give something back to women.”

What is new in 2022?

In 2022 with Alltech’s support, we want to take the initiative to the next level including:

 Facilitating more mentorship pairings across the globe and with an inclusive range of backgrounds and sub-sectors.

 Providing additional educational and supportive sessions to guide the pairings through the year.

 A mentor and mentee directory to aid networking amongst all participants.

How will it work?

We are accepting applications for mentors and mentees until 31st January 2022. You are invited to submit your application to become a mentor or be mentored – or both!

Matchmaking will take place in February and you will receive information about your counterpart once all pairings have been arranged. Your first virtual meeting and introductory sessions will be conducted in March.

We provide suggestions and guidance for conducting your monthly mentorship sessions.

In fact, you’ll benefit from WFA support and coaching for a year to make the most of this experience! Quarterly discussion sessions and roundtables offer another opportunity to engage with the wider group of participants and receive support throughout the mentorship program.

Please bear in mind that we have limited capacity in our virtual meeting platform, so we might not be able to match everyone during this round.

We hope the pairing will also get to meet at our 2022 WFA event when we can go back to face to face large scale meetings.

How much time should I allot for mentorship meetings?

We suggest that you meet with your counterpart each month for a 30–60-minute virtual discussion. You and your counterpart are free to discuss a schedule that suits both your schedules.

WFA will conduct quarterly meetings of about an hour to support our mentors and mentees.

Be the change you want to see by supporting women in our industry and championing their career progression

Develop your skills in the area of coaching and managing

Take the opportunity to reflect on your own development and growth

Build your own confidence and self-esteem by providing support to others

Grow connections in our industry

Experience rewarding interactions and get to know the next generation of leaders of food and ag

Establish new industry contacts

You do not have to be a senior-level executive (or a woman)! We are looking for people at all levels and backgrounds to provide insights and guidance, and we will ensure that you have more experience than your mentee.

Mentor applicants should:

Be a good listener

Be an honest and open person who is willing to share your expertise

Have at least one year of experience in the food and ag sector

Be someone who can dedicate 1 hour per month to connect with your counterpart

Ideally possess some leadership or management experience

For meaningful change to be possible, the conversation itself must be inclusive. We therefore welcome men to apply as mentors and become advocates for workplace equity.

As a mentee, you’ll be paired with a mentor who will provide you with advice and support to develop your career. When submitting your application, you are able to select mentor preferences.   You should apply to become a mentee if you would like to:

Gain the support of those who have overcome the same challenges that you face

Get advice on career progression and how to promote yourself

Explore new ideas and identify opportunities for yourself

Build connections in our industry

 

Mentees are comprised of women who are working within agri-food or exploring a career within the industry.

We welcome people of all career and education levels, and we will ensure that your mentor has the experience to provide you with insightful guidance.

Mentee applicants should be:

 A good listener

 An honest and open person who is willing to accept feedback

 Someone who would benefit from help and support from a senior person in our industry

 Someone who can dedicate 1 hour per month to meeting with a mentor

With the support of Alltech, we are providing this program at no cost to participants.

How to apply?

You can apply by filling out one of the forms below.

Become a Mentor
Become a Mentee

Even mentors can use new insights and guidance. You are welcome to apply to be both a mentor and a mentee!