Friends of Odysseus Mentoring Program

King Odysseus is a legendary Greek king of Ithaca and the hero of Homer's epic poem. Odysseus is celebrated for his intellectual cleverness, cunningness, and versatility. Greek mythology tells us that King Odysseus entrusted the training and development of his son, Telemachus, to his friend, Mentor. Since then, a friend of Odysseus, or a mentor, has come to mean a trusted confidant, teacher, and advisor.

Mission Statement
Friends of Odysseus is a mentorship program serving students and staff within the Mount Sinai Health System. Our goal is to help individuals from underrepresented groups navigate their career paths and seek avenues for advancement.

As new students and staff join the Icahn School of Medicine and the Mount Sinai Health System, we strive to increase our membership accordingly. As the group expands, so will the reach of our networks. There is strength in numbers.

Components of the Program
The Friends of Odysseus program features the following components:

  • Man-2-Man Series
    This is a monthly initiative geared to male Black and Latino medical students and staff. The forum is an interview-style Q & A, hosted by Friends of Odysseus Director, Reginald Miller, DVM, DACLAM, Dean of Research Operations and Infrastructure, and a faculty guest speaker. The dialogue allows participants to build a support system and brotherhood.
  • Financial Literacy Series:
    During the month of February, Friends of Odysseus will feature a Financial Literacy Series, which teaches finance management, budgeting, and investing for retirement. The aim is to educate participants about financial independence and generational wealth.
  • Scholar-athletes With Academic Goals (SWAG) Initiative
    This initiative is a pipeline program for scholar-athletes in junior high, high school, and college interested in science and medicine. Our committee organizes events and symposiums to build this network and funnel our members into various programs and opportunities.
  • Game Plan Initiative
    This monthly meeting series is hosted by Dr. Miller, who is the Game Plan Director, and a guest speaker who is a former athlete (collegiate or professional) currently in the field of medicine. The discussions help participants understand managing sports and academic studies—and how to excel in both.

If you have any questions or want to join our meetings and listserv, please contact us at FriendsOfOdysseus@mssm.edu.