The MentorinnenNetzwerk is a joint project of the universities in the State of Hesse in Germany, among them five state universities and six universities of applied sciences. It has been founded in 1998. Currently there are about 2,400 members: 1,800 female students and PhD students in natural science and engineering (mentees) and 600 professional women from businesses, academia and government (mentors). It is one of the largest mentoring networks of its kind in Europe.

Within the framework of a public-private partnership, well-known German companies and non-affiliated research organizations also take a share in this successful project. The coordinating office is located at the Goethe-University in Frankfurt/M.

Mission and target groups

The MentorinnenNetzwerk aims to support female students in natural science and engineering in planning their careers, and it has established a platform for women coming from these backgrounds. The goals range from strengthening women in their professional competencies to providing them with more visibility (role models) as well as to support female students and doctoral candidates in their transition between their studies, dissertation and professional work. The Network also wishes to increase the percentage of women in science and engineering and to improve career opportunities for women in business and academia towards leadership positions.

The target group is female students and PhD candidates enrolled in one of the ten partner universities. The exclusively female mentors are experienced professionals mainly working in the private sectors but also represent academia as well as other areas. Human resource development for mentors plays an increasing role for our partners in the private sector.


The MentorinnenNetzwerk offers a German-speaking programme and consists of mentoring, training and networking. Each spring, a 1-year one-to-one mentoring programme is kicked off for about 120 - 140 tandems. This includes a comprehensive framework programme.

There is an additional training programme tailored to the needs of mentors and mentees. Topics for mentees include soft skills workshops and job application training. Training for mentors often relates to coaching and leading competencies.

Moreover, the MentorinnenNetzwerk offers a number of networking events, such as visits to well-known companies, networking-events and networking dinners for mentors.

If you are interested in becoming a member, you can apply here. Please note all further information are available in German only.