Mentoring Program

The mentoring program of the Woodturners of SW Missouri is one of the unique benefits of our club.  Our mentors can help with basic to complex turning and teach safety along the way.  This is a great way to start out or hone your skills with complex tasks taught by turners skilled in specific tasks.   Our mentors are volunteers and are dedicated to sharing information on all facets of woodturning.

Please note that you have to be a member of the Woodturners of SW Missouri and the American Association of Woodturners to join the mentor program.   This also applies to participation in the “open turning” sessions at the club meetings.  This is a requirement of our AAW Insurance policy.  All students must sign a waiver when joining the program.  Download the waiver by clicking here.

Our mentors are matched one-on-one with members seeking instruction in specific or general topics.  Mentors have a variety of expertise and we attempt to match skill levels with applicants.  Realizing that some new turners may feel intimidated by more experienced turners, our club has a variety of skill levels within the mentor group.  Rest assured however, that all of our mentors are easy to work with.  Most often the mentor opens his/her shop to the applicant at a mutually agreed upon time and schedule.  A list of current Mentors their specialties is attached.

In addition to our one-on-one mentoring sessions our club offers “open turning” after club meetings about three times each year.  Mentors are available at these sessions to provide basic instruction or answer specific questions on most any subject.

So how does the mentoring program actually work?  The program is flexible but in general this is how it works.

*Members who are willing to mentor tell the mentor coordinator what they feel comfortable teaching.

*When someone makes a request for mentoring, the coordinator searches for the mentor whose skills match the request and lives in close proximity (when possible) to the mentored.

*Then the coordinator calls the mentor to see if they are available to accept a new student.

*Once the mentor agrees they will contact the student directly.

*They then discuss schedules and normally meet in the mentor’s shop.  Students need to bring their own tools, face shield, sanding/finishing supplies and in some cases wood to turn.

*If the student does not have equipment this should be discussed with the mentor during first contact.

*The mentors/students are responsible for setting up future meetings with each other.

*If for some reason the match does not work for either party the student should contact the mentor coordinator for reassignment.

*There is no limit to the number of sessions so long as the mentor and student agree on the progress.

Note: the mentor is responsible for recording the time, date, length of each session and the student’s name and AAW member number for each session.  This record is to be forwarded to the Mentor Coordinator after each session.  This reporting may be adapted to be entered on our web site.

o join the mentor program you must be at least 18 years of age OR be accompanied by a parent or guardian to each mentoring session.  The parent/guardian must be present during the entire session.

No exceptions.

We are always looking for new mentors.  Are you willing to share your knowledge with less experienced turners?  Please contact the mentor coordinator and discuss your skills and areas of expertise.

Other programs for Beginning Woodturners

Are you just starting out in woodturning?  We can hook you up with a knowledgeable turner who can help you make decisions about buying equipment from lathes to finishing products.  We can also help you find the best sources for all sorts of turning equipment and information.  Just contact the mentor coordinator and we will find someone to help you.

Want to join the Woodturners of SW Missouri Mentoring program?

Contact us by filling out the form below, or visit with us at any meeting.   Let us know your needs, either as a mentor or student, and we will fit you into our program.

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