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About The Author  
Carol Fertig

Carol Fertig

I have been active in the education community for more than 40 years and involved in gifted education for more than 20 years. At various times, I have been a classroom teacher, gifted education teacher, consultant, writer, editor—you name it. I live in Colorado, but also spend a fair amount of time in Chicago. I have two grown boys: one in Colorado and one in California. In my spare time, I enjoy skiing, mountain biking, and golfing. I also like to read, go to plays, and watch foreign movies. Feel free to send me an e-mail.

I am also the author of Raising a Gifted Child: A Parenting Success Handbook. This book offers a large menu of strategies, resources, organizations, tips, and suggestions for parents to find optimal learning opportunities for their gifted kids, covering the gamut of talent areas, including academics, the arts, technology, creativity, music, and thinking skills.

Raising a Gifted Child

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Mentors for Gifted Science Students

Amber Hess is a passionate science student who has won awards at many prestigious science competitions. She was an Intel Science Talent Search Finalist, a semifinalist for the Siemens Westinghouse competition, and she won a First Place Grand Award in Chemistry at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). She qualified to compete at the California State Science Fair five times, winning 4th, 3rd, and two 1st place awards. Hess is now attending MIT where she is majoring in chemical engineering. In her article How to Find a Mentor, she stresses the importance of a mentor/advisor, stating that the vast majority of winners of top fairs have mentors and the vast majority of students have to find their own mentors.

 
Hess gives specific steps for finding a mentor and stresses the importance of students finding their own mentors. It is, she states, the only way they’ll appreciate the advisor. She also feels strongly that mentors respond when contacted by motivated students, not motivated teachers.
 
Many other valuable tips for participating in science competions can be found at the Science Buddies Web site where this article is posted.
 
Pat Limbach, an associate professor of chemistry at the University of Cincinnati, has also written an interesting article about mentoring titled Mentoring Minority Science Students: Can a White Male Really Be an Effective Mentor? Limbach has successfully mentored many minority students. In his article he describes the importance of understanding cultural differences, including family and personal expectations.
 
If you are a serious science student or a potential mentor of one, you will want to read these articles.
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