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What is STAHR?

Students in Training, Academia, Health & Research (STAHR) is a leadership and professional development program that supports academic success and professional excellence of students, trainees, staff and faculty who come from, identify with, or are interested in under-served communities.

We connect individuals across the School of Medicine’s health sciences, PhD and MD programs. Using a tiered mentorship model we build a network of support and a community that nurtures a sense of belonging and wellbeing.

The program hosts monthly workshops that feature nationally recognized experts and highly respected guest speakers. Mentors and mentees thoughtfully engage with each other as they learn how to successfully navigate their academic and professional careers.

The Thomas Principles

Effective mentorship aims to improve student and trainee adjustment to the UNC Chapel Hill learning environment; increase the number of admitted students and trainees who successfully complete their professional degrees and training; and ensure that students and trainees demonstrate academic and professional excellence. The STAHR program is built upon the Thomas Principles, which include:

  • Identity Development
  • Social Support
  • Psychological Wellness
  • Academic & Professional Support
  • Sense of Belonging
  • Leadership Development

Program Activities at a Glance

We gather with the intention to be open, to be honest, to be brave, to listen and to learn. The STAHR program includes a combination of required workshops and optional social gatherings throughout the academic year (August – April). To get the most benefit from the program, we ask all participants (mentees and mentors) to be present for all required workshops.

Required programming:

  • New Mentor Training
  • Mentor-Mentee Retreat
  • Identity Development Workshop
  • Psychological Wellness Workshop
  • Academic & Professional Development Workshop
  • Leadership Development Workshop
  • Program Culmination

STAHR social gatherings are fun and a great way to connect with each other. Examples of past socials include:

  • UNC tailgate (fall)
  • STAHR potluck (spring)
  • Microcluster get togethers (shared meals, escape room outings etc)


The online application for individuals new to the program will open in April and will be available until June.

A lot of mentors and mentees find the program to be very beneficial and chose to return to the program over multiple years. If you would like to continue being an active part of the STAHR community, please submit your intent to return online by June.

Want to Learn More?

There are multiple opportunities for you to learn more about the program. We hold interest meetings during the spring semester. Check back for information about upcoming sessions.

We are also available to speak to your department or program. You can request a presentation here.

Email your questions to Mona Syed