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Mentors Make Projects Productive

CEED teams are powerful


When you set up a CEED project, a powerful team is formed, comprising one or more students with their academic supervisors, and a member of your staff described as the project Mentor.

This team provides an excellent balance which puts projects on track quickly, and harnesses the knowledge and strengths of each player. The Mentor’s background knowledge and understanding of your requirements, coupled to the energy and intellect of high grade students, amplified by the knowledge and research experience of the academic supervisors, is a potent combination.

Pivotal role of Mentor

Your choice of project Mentor greatly influences the value you will obtain from a project. The Mentor needs to be familiar with your organisation and your reasons for undertaking the project. Expertise on the research topic is less important than enthusiasm, which will often boost student performance.

The Mentor’s principal role is to bring your organisation’s perspective and requirements into the project, and link students as necessary to others who have the required knowledge. The Mentor essentially guides, rather than drives, the project.

Mentor input

Preparation and student selection

When projects are first proposed (with just a very brief description), Mentors are named so our academic supervisors can make contact to clarify any issues regarding the proposed topics. CEED advertises projects to students and, after academic supervisors have shortlisted applicants, your Mentors are involved with interviewing and appointing students.

Start up

Once students have undergone special CEED training, teams meet to discuss and refine project objectives, identify relevant constraints, and agree on appropriate procedures for communication and decisions. Students document all of these in a CEED Project Brief, agreed and signed by all team members. This is an iterative process, which enables the team to determine effective and realistic goals,and establish the resources needed and their scheduling. The Project Brief becomes the benchmark against which progress is measured, making students less dependent on their Mentors day to day.

Working at your premises

Mentors remain the primary point of contact for students throughout, and arrange the necessary facilities for the period students spend working on their projects at your premises. Even during this period, the Mentor’s role is still monitoring progress, allocating perhaps an hour a week to meet with the students.

Balance of project period

When students are based back at the University, they are required to report regularly to their Mentors so that projects can be guided along the path of most value to you. The occasional team meeting may be desirable to discuss progress in more detail, but is not essential.

Conclusion of project

When students prepare their CEED seminar papers, and later their theses, Mentors check and confirm they are free from sensitive or confidential information. At the end of the project, Mentors check that all agreed reports and other project deliverables have been supplied as agreed in the CEED Project Brief.

Full guidance is provided in the CEED Manual for Mentors

Proposing CEED Projects

Structure of CEED Projects

Student Selection

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