AccessComputing Mentors Application

Shape the future... be an AccessComputing Mentor.

The AccessComputing electronic mentoring community provides an opportunity for students with disabilities to communicate via email and during program activities with mentors and other students with disabilities. Your role as an AccessComputing Mentor is a mix of friend and teacher. Your goal is to inspire and facilitate personal, academic, and career achievements in the DO-IT participants for whom you mentor. These mentees are college-capable students with disabilities pursuing challenging computing degrees and career fields.

Do you have what it takes to be an AccessComputing Mentor?

The relationships you develop with your mentee become channels for the passage of information, advice, challenges, opportunities, and support. AccessComputing Mentors offer mentees these opportunities:
  • Information
    Mentors share their knowledge, experiences, and wisdom.
  • Contacts
    Mentors provide valuable opportunities by facilitating academic, career, and personal contacts.
  • Challenges
    Mentors stimulate curiosity and build confidence by presenting new ideas, opportunities, and challenges.
  • Support
    Mentors encourage growth and achievement by providing an open and supportive environment.
  • Goal Setting
    Mentors help mentees discover talents and interests and define and attain their goals.
  • Advice
    Mentors guide mentees in reaching academic, career, and personal goals.
  • Role Models
    By sharing stories of achievement with mentees, mentors can become role models.

How do AccessComputing Mentors and mentees communicate?

Mentors and mentees are not matched one-to-one but rather communicate through the use of large group email-based discussion lists. Frequent email communication combined with personal contact at AccessComputing-sponsored events, facilitates personal, academic, and career achievement.

AccessComputing Mentors are subscribed to several electronic discussion lists:

  • doitsem - A public forum to discuss STEM issues pertaining to individuals with disabilities.
  • mentors - A discussion list for mentors.
  • AccessSTEM - A forum where mentors with academic and/or professional backgrounds in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields engage with mentees who are studying, teaching, and working in STEM.
  • disability-specific lists - Where mentors and mentees each participate in special interest groups to discuss issues related to a specific disability area.

For more information about DO-IT’s mentoring community, consult Opening Doors: Mentoring on the Internet.


College students, postsecondary faculty, and professionals from a variety of challenging academic and career fields are encouraged to apply.

How to Apply

Submit the AccessComputing Mentor Application online or print the form and send in by postal mail, fax, or email. Because safety is of particular concern for young people using the Internet, all Mentor candidates are asked to complete and return a Criminal Conviction & Civil Finding History Questionnaire. Once we receive your completed application, we will follow-up via email on the next steps for the background check and signing the AV release digitally.

About AccessComputing

The Department of Computer Science and Engineering and DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking and Technology) at the University of Washington lead the AccessComputing Project for the purpose of increasing the participation of people with disabilities in computing careers nationwide.  

For further information, to be placed on the mailing list, request materials in an alternate format, or to make comments or suggestions about DO-IT publications or web pages, contact:

University of Washington
Box 354842
Seattle, WA 98195-4842
206-685-DOIT (3648) (voice/TTY)
888-972-DOIT (3648) (toll free voice/TTY)
509-328-9331 (voice/TTY) Spokane
206-221-4171 (fax)

AccessComputing Leaders

Dr. Richard Ladner, PI
Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler, Co-PI
Dr. Elaine Schaertl Short, Co-PI
Dr. Raja Kushalnagar, Co-PI
Dr. Stacy Branham, Co-PI
Dr. Brianna Blaser, Associate Director
Dr. Amy Ko, Senior Personnel
Terrill Thompson, 
IT Accessibility Team Manager
Kayla Brown, Program Coordinator
Lyla Crawford, Internal Evaluator


AccessComputing is supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant #CNS-0540615, CNS-0837508, CNS-1042260, CNS-1539179, CNS-2137312. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation. 

Copyright © 2021 University of Washington. Permission is granted to copy these materials for educational, noncommercial purposes provided the source is acknowledged.