Mentoring and Professional Development

A person writing in a notebook with other materials, coffee cup and saucer sits on the writing table above the notebook with text on the right, Mentoring and Professional Development Helping you grow.


We make it a priority to connect our employees to the people and information they need to ensure successful experiences, in an environment that supports professional and personal growth. We encourage all of our employees to participate in the many library-affiliated national organizations and communities, as well as participate in professional development opportunities offered at Penn State.

The University Libraries also provides the Faculty Mentoring Program for new faculty and the Buddy Program for new staff.

Faculty Mentoring Program

Established in 2004, the University Libraries Mentoring Program pairs newly hired faculty with more experienced colleagues to assist them with navigating the University Libraries and Penn State, and to help mentees thrive within library and information sciences (LIS) and allied professions. Learning, person-centeredness, professional growth, and social support are at the heart of our Faculty Mentoring Program. The goal is to ensure success in their position as well as in promotion and/or tenure. Additional development opportunities are offered University-wide. Visit the Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs website to explore faculty development and recognition programs.

Buddy Program

Established in 2019, the Buddy Program matches newly hired staff employees with established staff members for a period of six months. The program is designed to provide new employees with a point of contact for general questions regarding day-to-day operations, and to help new employees assimilate with the University and the University Libraries by providing access to someone who is familiar with our culture, attitude, and expectations. This program is coordinated by the Onboarding Oversight Working Group and supported by our Libraries Administration team.

Financial Support for Professional Development

The University Libraries offers generous and competitive travel budgets for our employees. See the Types of Library Travel policy for details.