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Mentoring Scheme for Female MU Members Launched

The MU and have combined forces to support women in the industry by matching fellow musicians together, to help one another grow and succeed in their careers.

Published: 13 March 2019 | 12:00 AM Updated: 28 April 2021 | 4:29 PM

This project seeks to equip women to address any challenges they may face in fulfilling their career goals in the music industry. A key part of this is ensuring that women have the opportunity to meet, learn and be motivated by positive female role models from within the same industry.

MU Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Official, John Shortell says:

“The idea for the mentoring scheme came directly from MU members through the Union's democratic process and it’s great to work with an amazing organisation like to deliver the scheme.

“We know female musicians make up a small percentage of festival line-ups globally and representation of females in other sectors of the industry still isn’t where it should be.

“I hope that that the mentoring scheme will empower our female members by giving them a meaningful opportunity to learn from female role models who have overcome barriers in the industry and paved the way for future generations of female musicians.”

Joining the scheme as a mentor or mentee

Female members of the MU can apply to take part in she.grows as either mentors or mentees.

The MU welcomes applications from all women – including trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people who are female-identifying – and encourages applications from BAME, disabled and LBQ Women.

We invite applications from women working in a variety of areas across the industry, with the aim of selecting 20 women to create 10 pairs of mentors and mentees.

How will the mentoring scheme work?

Each mentor and mentee will meet for a minimum of two hours per month, as well as taking part in a bimonthly event curated and hosted by on a range of topics that focus on professional development.

All mentors will receive mentoring training provided by Remi Harris to make sure they have all the skills they need for the six months ahead, and each pair will be assigned their own Mentoring Manager who will commit to spending time with either side of the partnership at least once a month, measuring satisfaction and taking feedback.

Why is mentoring so important?

Central to the mentoring process is the guarantee to the mentee that there are people who care about them and their future. It assures them they are not alone in dealing with day to day challenges, and it makes them feel that they matter.

Research shows that quality mentoring relationships can have a powerful effect on people in a variety of personal, academic and professional situations.

Mentoring helps develop the future workplace talent pipeline by:

  • Preparing people for college, university and careers.
  • Helping mentees set career goals and take steps to realise them.
  • Enabling mentees to develop their self-confidence.
  • Helping them develop skills for seeking, auditioning for and keeping a job.
  • By being a positive presence, mentors can offer advice, share life experiences, and help a mentee to navigate challenges. Ultimately mentoring connects a mentee to personal growth, development and social and economic opportunities.

What will mentors be expected to do?

As a mentor you are not expected to open your personal contact book, become the mentees agent or music teacher.

One-to-one mentoring is:

  • A one-to-one relationship, usually over a set period, in which someone with more experience (a mentor), provides consistent support, guidance and practical help for a less experienced person (a mentee).
  • A voluntary relationship, which the mentee or mentor can end at any time.
  • A two-way process in which the mentor shares their personal skills, knowledge and experience with the mentee to enable them to explore their personal and professional situation, and in which the mentor and mentee work together to achieve predetermined goals and objectives.
  • A way of enabling the mentee to gain the skills, knowledge and confidence to perform at a higher level, and of giving them access to confidential, impartial, non-judgemental guidance and support.

What will mentees be expected to do?

By applying to be a mentee you’ll benefit from the skills, knowledge and experience of your mentor – but mentoring is a two-way process, so you’ll only get out what you put in.

A successful mentor/mentee relationship will mean:

  • Taking responsibility for your own learning.
  • Actively shaping the mentoring conversation or activity.
  • Accepting challenges and constructive feedback.
  • Being open and honest.
  • Having realistic expectations that you share and agree with your mentor.

How to apply for the scheme

Mentee applications will be split based on career stage and the objectives that mentees wish to achieve by taking part in the scheme.

The applications will then run through a series of reviews alongside mentor applications to determine the perfect pair. Then, the pairs will be announced when the scheme officially kicks off in early May.

Find out more about how to apply, and fill out the application form on our she.grows X MU page:

Apply now

If you have any questions about the scheme please contact

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