Announcing: TLC BIPOC Teaching Mentorship Program

The Teaching and Learning Center seeks applicants to be mentees for a new pilot program providing mentorship for BIPOC doctoral students at the Graduate Center. This paid initiative, generously funded by the DGSC, builds upon and responds to discussions the TLC has organized with BIPOC-identified graduate student teachers.

We acknowledge the invisible labor that BIPOC graduate students that teach at CUNY often perform—they teach BIPOC undergraduates throughout CUNY with little support from the university and their departments for the mentoring demands placed upon them. Our mentorship program seeks to interrupt this reproduction of invisible labor for BIPOC graduate students and faculty by instantiating a well-resourced and supported institutional effort to equitably balance and disperse the responsibility for mentoring.

We are seeking applicants who identify as BIPOC and are in their second or third-year in a PhD program in the social sciences or humanities at the Graduate Center. Selected applicants will receive a $1,000 stipend for their participation in this program, which will extend from October 2023 to May 2024.

About The Program  

The Graduate Center’s Office of Compliance and Diversity noted that 56% of the GC student body identify as coming from a minoritized group (Underrepresented Minority, Asian, International Student, and Multiracial) as of 2022. Despite this, faculty of color account for approximately 14% of the full-time faculty throughout all programs at the GC. Students have actively advocated for hiring more BIPOC faculty, and although efforts have been made, there is often “invisible labor,” or an unfair burden placed on these faculty to mentor BIPOC students in addition to their general workload. This reflects larger trends in academia, where students and faculty are consistently pressuring institutions to hire and adequately support faculty of color.

This program is part of the broader effort to bolster, connect, and provide resources for peer and near-peer mentorship programs at the Graduate Center, and to expand mentorship specifically focused on pedagogical training.

Program Design 

The program is inspired by a participatory action research model and will incorporate a collaborative approach in which four Senior Teaching Mentorship Fellows, two TLC coordinators, and eight student mentees take the lead in designing and structuring the pilot program. The use of participatory action research reflects the philosophy of the TLC as an organization that serves the student body. We believe that expertise is distributed throughout our community, and that institutional support should harness, lift up, and circulate the knowledge that exists within the college.

The four Senior Teaching Mentorship Fellows and two TLC coordinators each identify as BIPOC, and have extensive experience teaching and mentoring at CUNY senior and community colleges. Mentors have been participating in weekly meetings to scope the  program and its possibilities.

Program Responsibilities:

Mentees will receive a $1000 stipend for their participation in the program. Mentees who are selected for the program agree to:

  • Weekly check-ins with their mentors
  • Monthly meet ups to discuss the program and assess needs;
  • Non-evaluative observations of the classes they are teaching twice per semester (if applicable).
  • Ongoing evaluation and reflection about the program.

In the 2023-2024 year, we also plan to hold two public TLC events welcome to all BIPOC graduate students at the GC to further discuss and acknowledge their work as part of a community.

In order to apply, you:

  • Must identify as Black, Indigenous or a Person of Color;
  • Must be in your second or third year as a doctoral student at the GC;
  • Must have past or current experience as an educator (preferably at CUNY) or a future commitment to teaching at CUNY in Spring 2024;
  • Must be enrolled as a PhD student in a Social Science or Humanities program.

Deadline: October 3rd at Midnight

If you have any questions please reach out to Chandni Tariq ( and Cristine Khan (

To apply, please fill out this Google Form by October 3rd at midnight.