Students helping students: vertical peer mentoring to enhance the medical school experience

Christine Andre, Jessica Deerin, Luci Leykum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Background: Effective mentoring is an important component of medical student professional development. We provide a description of the mentoring program at our institution. Methods: Our institution UTHSCSA implemented a student-advising program (Veritas) with clinical faculty mentors and senior students (MiMs). The MiMs provided vertical peer mentoring to more junior students as an adjunct to faculty advising. The MiMs lead small group discussions that foster camaraderie, share academic and career information and promote professional identity. An optional MiM elective more intensively develops mentorship and leadership skills through a formal curriculum. The authors used annual survey data of all students as well as student mentors to evaluate program effectiveness. Results: Overall, student perception of the program improved each year across multiple domains, including feeling more prepared, supported and satisfied with their overall experience in medical school. Student mentors also found the process rewarding and helpful to their future careers as physicians. Conclusions: The authors suggest implementing a vertical peer-mentoring program can be an effective adjunct to faculty mentoring.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number176
JournalBMC Research Notes
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2 2017


  • Career advising
  • Medical students
  • Mentoring
  • Peer mentoring
  • Vertical peer mentoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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