MIT – Mentoring and Information Program for the Active Participation of Impaired Female Students and Postgraduates

MIT is addressed to female students and early career researchers, who aim for a doctorate despite a disability or impairment. Through MIT, you get the opportunity to be paired up with a suitable mentor from the University of Bamberg and take part in a support program that provides information on how to arrange your doctoral studies. MIT thus helps its scholarship holders to pursue and complete their PhD. In addition, it provides a space for mentees to discuss the challenges of living with a disability or chronic illness while working on a PhD.

Why MIT?

Although the number of female students is growing steadily, as is the number of students with disabilities and chronic illnesses, there are fewer and fewer women and fewer and fewer people with disabilities in academia the more you advance on the career ladder. According to the best2 study of the Deutsches Studentenwerk of 2017, one of the main problems of students with disabilities is that they are often excluded from learning opportunities outside the regular classroom. This might seem banal, but it isn't, because it also means that they are excluded from learning about how the larger system of the university works, knowledge which is absolutely vital for a sucessfull academic career. For women, this lack of opportunity and thus the lack of insider knowledge also constitutes a barrier more often than for men. Thus, disabled female students face a double barrier in terms of access to the kind of systemic knowledge they need to advance at the university. MIT was initiated to help students with impairments to overcoming such barriers.

What is Mentoring?

Mentoring is a term for a non-hierarchical relationship between an advanced scholar and a student to whom the advanced scholar provides council and support. Mutual confidentiality is ensured by a confidentiality statement.

What is MIT good for?

MIT helps the sponsored female students and doctoral students (mentees) to get in contact with a suitable mentor. Additionally, MIT provides opportunities of exchange between the mentees through a support program of lectures and workshops. Through the mentoring relationship, the participating students and doctoral students are encouraged and supported in their efforts to complete a PhD and to deal with the additional challenges they face due to a disability or chronic illness.

The support program also aims to provide background information about the university system and academic life in order to help participants to advance their academic careers. At the same time, it provides a spaces and opportunity for mentees to exchange experiences about the challenge of doing a PhD with a disability or chronic illness.

Support Program

The support program includes eight events within an 18-months period. Three of these events are mentee meetings, which are designed as biographical circles in the sense of the Fachkolleg Inklusion. Additionally, there are four workshops complementing the discussions in the biography circles with relevant information for women who want to pursue or are pursuing a PhD with a physical or mental impairment. Workshops offered include:

  • Disadvantage compensation in master and doctoral studies
  • Writing an exposé
  • How do I become a professor?
  • Creaing your own academic homepage

At the end of the MIT-sponsorship the mentees organize an event in cooperation with the program coordinator in which the mentees themselves act as speakers.


Who can apply?

MIT primarily focuses on female students and early career researchers with disabilities or chronic illnesses, who are aiming for a doctorate. However, female researchers who are interested in personal and academic exchange with fellow students and doctoral students with impairments are also cordially invited to apply. Evidence of an impairment is not necessary for the application or participation in the program.


Which application documents are necessary?

In order to apply, please provide:

  • a letter of motivation (1-2 pages)
  • a tabular curriculum vitae (CV)

Please send both documents in a single PDF to by 15th February 2019.


Time Period

The duration of the program is 18 months, starting in April 2019. Up to 10 female students and doctoral students can be supported.


If there are any further questions, do not hesitate to contact:

Dr. Sarah Böhlau

(Temporary Replacement for Dr. Janina Dillig)

Kontaktstelle Studium und Behinderung


MIT is a cooperation of the women's representative office, the contact point study and disability of the University of Bamberg and the "Fachkolleg Inklusion an Hochschulen - gendergerecht" of the Hildegardisverein e.V.