Meet The Mentor

 In Meet The Mentor, Voices of Diversity

Janae Currington

Degree: M.Ed

Current Title: Assistant Director of Academic Advising

Current Institution: Michigan State University

Current City: East Lansing, MI

Which Tours: T4D Midwest, T4D Southwest, T4D Northeast, T4D Northwest

Favorite Stop: Georgetown was my favorite because that program was for high school students and there was a special session for their parents. Being able to spark interest in health care and confirm that ‘yes, you CAN do this” to a pre-college group was so fun and fulfilling. Also, being able to connect with their parents and discuss ways to support their children who are pursuing such a time consuming path was awesome as well.

Favorite Tour Memory: My favorite tour memory is bonding with all of the mentors over bacon on my first tour.

Funniest Event on the tour: When one of the mentors accidentally pulled the fire alarm at the start of a tour day. We all learned to pay more attention to the walls we’re leaning on.

Why do I T4D: I T4D because our rising generations need someone to remind them that they are not their GPAs and test scores. They aren’t numbers. They are humans with life experiences that are valuable and worthy and the health field does need them.

What is the best advice for pre-health students: When deciding your major, imagine that health careers don’t exist. We don’t get sick, we don’t die, we don’t need any health care providers. Think about what career you want to do then. Choose the major that best prepares you for THAT career and take any additional coursework needed for professional health school as electives.

Hobbies: Reading, “Fooding” and running outdoors

Mentorship Expertise: Advising

Would you do it all over again: Yes. After I realized that I actually did not want to be a physician, I looked to what I actually enjoyed most in my life and working as a student worker in my schools advising office was the answer. That career was the best fit for me to have the flexibility that I want in a career.

Since joining the tour, what changes have occurred in your professional life: I was elected to the Board of Directors for the Central Association of Advisors for the Health Professions, I was promoted from Lead Preprofessional Advisor to Assistant Director of Academic Advising for the College of Natural Science at MSU and I also won the National Academic Advising Association Region 5 Award for Excellence in Advising.

Most Rewarding Accomplishment as a mentor: When a tour participant arrives looking stressed but leaves smiling and looking confident

Biggest mentoring challenge: Time is always my biggest challenge. I wish I could do every tour

What is your long term professional goal: To continue to impact the lives of marginalized groups in a positive way and use whatever platform I have at my disposal to be a voice for them

Greatest Advice a mentor has given you: One of the mentors did a video about her experience with her advisor as an undergrad. The advisor was dismissive of her because her GPA was not as high as other students. The advice I got from watching that was to focus on paying more attention not only to what words I use when talking to students but also what my body language implies. I never want a student to leave my office feeling like I’ve closed a door for them.

Who is your hero: My mother. She taught me not only to make good choices, but how to recognize a good choice and how to bounce back after making some bad ones

Accepting new mentees: Not at this time

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