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My experience has been that mentorship works best when it evolves naturally - my biggest mentors in medical school and residency have been supervisors that I formed a bond with during our clinical experiences together, and those conversations sort of happened naturally in between patients or over coffee or at the end of the day or in supervision meetings, and then kept happening even after we stopped working together.  A great way of achieving that is through electives and core rotations (or shadowing if/when that's an option again) - just keeping an eye out for supervisors that seem friendly and interested in teaching and working on forming that relationship in bits and pieces when you happen to get a few moments with them.  A great time in clerkship can be when you get your end of rotation feedback, because that's a time when you organically get one on one time that's set aside just for you, and you can say that you're interested in the field, and ask a couple of questions.  If they're willing to talk more later, they'll probably make the offer themselves, and if not, then you've still gotten some questions answered.  The nice thing about this approach is that it doesn't put anyone on the spot, and a few minutes is easier to find than setting aside an hour for a formal meeting.  This can be either staff or residents - residents can be great mentors, especially middle to senior ones who have a good sense of what the field is like and are close enough to medical school themselves to be motivated to help you out.

If you have specific questions for a particular person (i.e. more than things like "what do you like about X specialty" or "what is the day-to-day work like"), I could see sending an email saying you are really interested in learning more about X specific thing, you know that they do X thing, and you are wondering if they would be willing to answer some questions or point you in the direction of someone who can.  I would probably put the questions in the email in that case.  Another way if you really feel like you want to actively find someone to talk with, might be to talk to someone who is actually involved in education - for example, the clerkship coordinator or education coordinator for the specialty, share your interests, and ask if they can connect you with someone who might be able to answer some questions - when I've done this, I've found that being connected through another physician often seems less random, and those people often know who is willing to field those types of requests.  Or attending interest group meetings and contacting the speaker afterwards.

But again, I've found that the informal approach via clinical experiences has worked better for me - just keeping an eye out on rotations and building the relationships naturally.  I've had a few occasions where I've been "assigned" a mentor and it's rarely worked out - it always seems to end up feeling sort of forced and random.  Also, when someone sees your clinical work and sees that you are hard working and genuinely interested, they become more invested in helping you.

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