Information for Staff Mentors

  Group of people outdoors Copyright: © Martin Braun

Staff Mentors are experienced RWTH members who come from all areas of the University, from administration to academia. They are curious about other cultures and would like to meet international people. They know their way around Aachen and RWTH really well and can speak German, English, or other foreign languages. Finally, they are happy to serve as a contact for one international researcher for about three months.



Andrea Porten

Welcome Center / StaffMentor Program


+49 241 80 90834



Structure of the Program

Based on your registration details, we will look for a suitable mentee for you and put you two in touch, usually before your mentee comes to Aachen. You will answer their initial questions about life in Aachen and show them the central institutions on campus and in Aachen once they have arrived in the city, offer support with everyday matters, and serve as their contact during their first three months in Aachen.

How Can I Sign Up?

You can sign up at any time and then participate in an obligatory Staff Mentor training session. An intercultural training session is also planned. We will then try to match you with an international researcher as soon as possible.

Staff Mentor Training Session Dates

  • Friday, June 30, 2023
  • Friday, July 28, 2023
  • Friday, September 29, 2023
  • Friday, October 27, 2023
  • Friday, November 25, 2023
When? 1 to 2pm
Where? Zoom
Who? Andrea Porten

During the Staff Mentor training, we will discuss the tasks of Staff Mentors in detail and how the Welcome Center for International Researchers will support you.

Your Commitment Will Be Rewarded

At the end of your mentoring period, you will be issued a bilingual certificate in recognition of your social and intercultural commitment. Participation in the Staff Mentor Program can be recognized as a component of the Certificate International Pro.

Heard About IntSpire – the Internationalization Prize?

Institutions and individuals who are particularly committed to internationalization can be nominated for this award.


FAQ on Staff Mentor Program

Do I have to attend the Staff Mentor training session?

Yes, you have to take part in the Staff Mentor training session. You will find out about the tasks of the Staff Mentors and how the Welcome Center for International Researchers can support you.

How long will I be a Staff Mentor?

You should be available for around the first three months your mentee is in Aachen. If you already have a long vacation planned or know you have busy work periods coming up, please let us know well ahead of time.

Will we always speak English with our mentees?

Most new international researchers speak little or no German, so you will mostly communicate in English. However, you must have a good command of German in order to support your mentee in contacting German authorities. Perhaps you also speak the mentee's mother tongue and can improve your language skills with your mentee as a tandem partner?

I do not get along with my mentee. Can I get a new one?

If you are not a good match, you can stop being their mentor and let us know so we can match you with another mentee.

My mentee is not coming to Aachen after all, what now?

If you would like to continue taking part in the program, we will happily match you with another mentee.

My mentee needs support that I cannot provide. How do I deal with this?

You can always contact the Welcome Center for International Researchers if you have any questions. During the Staff Mentor training session, we will explain the scope of your mentoring duties in detail and also let you know what other service centers are relevant for supporting researchers.

I am taking part in Certificate International Pro. Will my work as a Staff Mentor be recognized?

Participation in the Staff Mentor Program can be recognized as a component of Certificate International Pro. Once you have successfully completed your stint as a mentor, we will issue you a certificate of participation.

I am going on vacation or am facing a busy period at work soon.

Please discuss any absences with us well aheady of time. If you have already been matched with your mentee, you should let them know well ahead of time, too.

How often should I meet up with my mentee?

This depends entirely on you and your mentee and is not officially specified. During this time of physical distancing, meetings can also be held remotey, by telephone, or by email.

Can I be a mentor to more than one person at a time?

If you have the time, you may mentor more than one person.