On Monday, Hockey Graphs announced a new mentorship program that seeks to give people a new way to learn about hockey analytics. The program aims to fill in a critical role in encouraging a greater diversity of voices in the analytics community by pairing people interested in learning with mentors who are well-versed in the field.
Hockey Graphs Editor in Chief Asmae Toumi introduced the new program. Inspired by similar programs in other areas of tech, the hope is that providing mentees with direct access to experts will provide a gateway into an area of study that can at times feel insular and prohibitive. In the introductory post, Toumi writes:
The aim of the Hockey-Graphs Mentorship Program (HMP) is to inspire people from various backgrounds, especially underrepresented persons, to contribute to the flourishing hockey analytics community.
Anyone who follows the community knows that the its members are overwhelmingly white men, as is the case in many tech fields. A program like this is a great step toward changing that. Diverse communities are stronger than homogenous ones, so implementing programs with specific intent to introduce more diversity is one way to cultivate new ways of thinking and new ideas.
If you’re interested in applying, I encourage you to do so. And just for clarity, the program is designed for anyone to be able to participate regardless of background and experience.
The CV requirement is for me to see what other interests you have. The more diverse, the better. Please apply if this sounds like you!— Asmae (@asmae_toumi) August 22, 2017
The program is getting plenty of interest, which is a great sign. So much so that Toumi has already put out a call for more mentors.
Amazing response to HMP so far - over 60 applications! I need more mentors. If you're interested, please send me a CV to email@example.com— Asmae (@asmae_toumi) August 22, 2017
If you think you might be a fit as a mentor, please reach out to the email above. Mentorship programs can be just as rewarding for the mentor as they are for the mentee. Other people who have already confirmed that they will be serving as mentors include Micah Blake Mccurdy, Namita Nandakumar, Matt Cane, Muneeb Alam, and Emmanuel Perry. Despite all of them rooting for awful teams (three Sens fans, a Flyers fan, and a Caps fan), those are some of the best analysts in hockey so anyone entering the program should be confident that they’ll have a great opportunity to learn.
While every decent human being agrees that diversity is a sign of a healthy community, just saying that isn’t enough. Communities and organizations need to take a strategic approach to bringing in new voices. This program is one example of how that can be done. The initial project will last one year. I fully expect at this time next year, we will see some new star analysts pushing hockey analytics forward with exciting cutting-edge projects.
For application instructions and more details, please see the original post here.