A Message from the President

Welcome to a new year!

I am excited to share the NORDP 3-year Strategic Plan with you today.

Your Board of Directors put a lot of effort into sorting feedback from member surveys, Board members, and past leaders, to ensure that NORDP continues to be the ambitious, innovative, and progressive organization that meets member needs.

Some highlights:

We have shortened and revised our mission statement in an effort to concisely align our strategic efforts with the organization our members want and need: The mission of NORDP is to advance the global capacity for and impact of research by strengthening the practice and profession of research development.

We identified seven common priority areas, or Key Result Areas (KRAs), that we will be focusing our attention, efforts, and resources on in the next three years:

  • governance
  • communication
  • career and professional development
  • diversity, inclusion, and equity
  • advancing the field of RD
  • membership
  • external relations

You will be seeing more information in the coming months about mobilizing these seven areas. If you are interested in working with us, please reach out and get involved. You can find more details on the plan and who to contact to get involved by visiting the following link to view a video or read the transcript.
https://nordp.memberclicks.net/member-updates

Thank you for your membership and for your involvement in NORDP. You make NORDP the organization it is and shape its future.

Cheers,
Karen aka Fletch
NORDP President

#NORDPMentoringMatters

NORDP 2019 Holiday cardBy Jan Abramson

The NORDP Mentoring Committee wishes all NORDP members a Happy New Year as we enter January 2020 … and National Mentoring Month. This January is the 19th annual celebration of the power of mentoring. Originally developed as a campaign to expand quality mentoring opportunities for youth, the month-designation can be a catalyst to remember the mentors and mentees that have supported you along your path.

The NORDP Mentoring Program is a benefit available to all NORDP Members. Members supporting members as mentors, as mentees, or as part of a peer mentor group, make our organization, and the profession of Research Development stronger.

Applications for the 2020 mentoring program will open in February. Until that time, be thinking of all the mentors and mentees who have enriched your life over the years. And mark your calendars.

January 8, 2020: I Am a Mentor Day

Recognize yourself for all you do as a mentor. Mentors can have profound impacts on mentees. Take a moment to reflect on your legacy. Share your experience using the national hashtag #MentorIRL.

January 30, 2020: Thank Your Mentor Day

Take a moment to reflect on the mentors who have influenced you. Send them a note, a text or an email. Share your story on social media using #ThankYourMentor.

And, please, consider becoming a mentor in the NORDP Mentoring Program when applications open. The Mentoring Committee has numerous resources to support you. For those of you who have benefited from the mentoring program, remember the strength of the program is #PayItForward.

Reminder: NORDP Strategic Plan Announcement Jan 10th

Please join NORDP President, Karen Fletcher, on Friday, January 10, 2020 from 2:00 – 3:00pm EST for the announcement of the NORDP Strategic Plan that was approved by the NORDP Board of Directors. This announcement will be via Zoom and you can join the meeting by using the log-in information below. Information about the Strategic Plan will be disseminated after the meeting via the blog and website for those of you unable to attend January 10.

Topic: NORDP Strategic Plan Roll Out to Membership

Time: Jan 10, 2020 02:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/592952056

Meeting ID: 592 952 056

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Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/aGBGMNQlQ

Meet the Member Services Committee

What exactly does the Member Services Committee do?

In its most fundamental sense, the Member Services Committee (MSC) manages two important services for NORDP: the recruitment of new members, and the retention of existing ones.

On the recruitment side, the MSC recruits new members through our prospect list. Prospects are folks who have attended past conferences, regional meetings, and/or signed up for our listserv but never became an official NORDP member. Our regional representatives reach out with a personal email, highlighting the benefits of joining NORDP. The MSC is also developing a recruiting campaign focused on the upcoming conference in San Antonio, Texas.

As for retention, Member Services manages membership benefits for NORDP, developing and implementing programs to ensure all of our members feel that what they gain from NORDP is worth the price of membership.

This means that the MSC regularly develops and implements membership surveys (like the member needs and satisfaction survey, or the forthcoming salary survey) to ensure NORDP has a pulse on the types of resources needed to effectively support the membership at large.

It also means that the Committee is a main point of contact and support for regional and affinity groups, working groups for special projects like the recent addition of Trainee and Retiree member categories, and subcommittees like the MSC Conference Activities group, which manages the Conference Ambassadors program

Wow, that sounds like a busy group. Who’s currently in charge?

The MSC is steered by a collaborative group consisting of a Chair and two co-Chairs:

  • Dr. Kay Tindle is an Assistant Vice President for Research at Texas Tech University and serves as the NORDP MSC Chair.
  • Dr. Sarah Messbauer is a Research Development Analyst at the University of California, Davis and is an MSC Co-Chair.
  • Dr. Brooke Gowl is currently Research Liaison Officer at the University of Houston, and as of January 13, 2020, will be Associate Director for Research Development in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at George Mason University; she is also a MSC Co-Chair.

How did each of you get involved with this committee?

Kay blames Peggy Sundermeyer and Terri Soelberg for her initial involvement in MSC.  Peggy recruited her to be the SW Region Representative and Terri brought all of the regional reps into the MSC.

Sarah has no one to blame but herself; less than two months into her first job in RD at the 2018 NORDP conference in D.C., Sarah attended the MSC business meeting with a list of suggestions for how to improve the conference experience for new members and first time attendees… only to be immediately dubbed the “New Member Liaison to Member Services” by the inimitable Kathy Cataneo.

Brooke received an email from Kay via the Southwest Region listserv asking if anyone was interested in being the Southwest Region’s Regional Representative. She responded that she was interested, and before she could blink, she was listed on the website as Regional Rep and a MSC member.

Now that you’re in charge, what goals do you have for Member Services? What would you like to accomplish as a committee in the near future?

Enhance responsiveness to member needs by soliciting regular feedback from members, taking action on that feedback, and anticipating and creating appropriate programming/actions for new members. Create a welcoming environment for new members.

That sounds like an ambitious set of goals… especially given that you’re doing this on top of your day jobs! Which begs the question: what are the benefits of volunteering your time to a committee like Member Services? What’s in it for you?

For Kay, serving as the MSC chair is an opportunity for her to give back to the organization that has given so much to her in her professional development journey. Sarah enjoys the many opportunities to develop her professional skillset and grow her network of friends and colleagues across the world. Brooke enjoys helping to continue NORDP’s development as an organization and ensuring that new and longtime members know that they are valued and have much to contribute to and receive from NORDP.

And last but not least, what would you say to encourage people to volunteer their time on the Member Services Committee?

Are you interested in learning more about the resources NORDP provides? Are you looking for ways to get more connected with NORDP? Ask the MSC at membership@nordp.org.

Compiled by Daniel Campbell, Member Services Committee

NORDP fosters a culture of inclusive excellence by actively promoting and supporting diversity, inclusion and equity in all its forms to expand our worldview, enrich our work, and elevate our profession.

Strategic Plan Announcement coming early 2020 – A Reflection on 2019

shutterstock_315818024.jpgHappy Holidays from NORDP!

As we close out the 2019 year, I want to thank you for your membership. NORDP’s strength is in our membership and your willingness to volunteer and share information. You make this organization one of the best gifts of the year.

Looking back on 2019, it has been a big year. Because of member volunteer efforts, we’ve hosted webinars, matched mentor and mentee pairs, strengthened alliances, provided diversity, equity, and inclusion training to leadership, awarded NORD grants, increased our membership to nearly 1000 members, and hosted our first-ever sold-out conference! And there are even more endeavors that have been accomplished that are too numerous to recount here. Congratulations to all of you on a successful year!

The organization also embarked on a formal strategic planning process that started with a membership survey we asked all of you to participate in in January (thank you for your participation). We followed up with member polls and conducted surveys with current and past leadership. Your Board of Directors met in September for two days and worked to create a strategic plan for the next three years. Since then we’ve been finalizing the plan and working on a budget that can operationalize the plan.

I am excited to announce that on Friday, January 10, 2020, from 2:00 – 3:00pm EST we will be announcing the outcome of the strategic planning session and the three-year strategic plan! We are really excited about it and looking forward to announcing it through a Zoom conference where we will be live and you can ask any questions. So, save the date! Call-in information will be sent out early that week. If you cannot attend, no worries! We will be recording it and posting more information on the website.

Thank you for your support and your trust in this Board as we embark on this journey together. I appreciate all of you as members, volunteers, past and current leaders, and research development professionals. I am excited to support all the great plans for 2020 and can’t wait to work with you all.

Cheers,

Karen, aka Fletch
NORDP President

NORDP fosters a culture of inclusive excellence by actively promoting and supporting diversity, inclusion and equity in all its forms to expand our worldview, enrich our work, and elevate our profession.

Save the Date!

NORDP Conference Registration Opens Feb. 4

As you make plans for a happy and prosperous New Year, don’t forget the 12th Annual NORDP Research Development Conference, set for May 17-20, 2020, in San Antonio, TX.

The program is being finalized, and presenters will soon be contacted.  The entire program will be available, along with registration information, on Feb. 4, 2020.

Hope to see you there, and Happy Holidays!

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12th Annual NORDP Research Development Conference

NORDP Liaison Report: Society for Neuroscience

Annual Meeting Report: Special News Related to NIH Early Stage Investigators

Inês Tomás Pereira, Research Development and Support Specialist at Brown University’s Carney Institute for Brain Science, serves as a NORDP liaison to the Society for Neuroscience (SfN), where she has been a member for 15 years.  She recently attended the SfN Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL, and offers the following summary.

The SfN annual meeting typically gathers almost 30,000 people for a five-day conference covering all aspects of neuroscience, with hundreds of concurrent lectures, symposia, minisymposia, nanosymposia, posters sessions, and professional development workshops. This year’s conference was special because the Director of Pereira’s institute, Diane Lipscombe, was also the President of SfN.

The session most relevant for NORDP members was entitled “Optimize Your Grant Application: News You Can Use From the NIH.” This session was targeted at Early Stage Investigators (ESI) and included information that was useful broadly to all grant applicants and research development professionals. The first presentation included advice from a representative from the NIH Center for Scientific Review, explaining the review process at NIH generally.

A senior member of NIMH provided statistics for NIMH funding for FY19 ($1.87B for FY19) and stated that the institute expects a relative increase in appropriations for next year. The R61/R33 program was highlighted as a mechanism that is being used to fund novel interventions. In regard to funding priorities for the NIMH, suicide prevention continues to be a topic of interest. In addition, RD professionals can find upcoming concept clearances from NIMH Council meetings for RFAs, Pas, and RFPs here. Specifically for ESI, the institute highlighted their NIMH BRAINS initiative, which is similar to the NIH DP2 and DP5 awards.

NINDS staff presented next. This is the largest of the neuroscience-related NIH institutes, with a budget of $2.27B in FY19 (~60% R01, ~10% BRAIN Initiative). The institute has reported a decrease in funding of basic research, and their analysis indicates that there is a comparable decrease in applications in that area. They would like to see those numbers increase and strongly stated that NINDS research does not need to be disease related. The main special initiatives at the Institute continue to be the BRAIN Initiative, efforts in Alzheimer’s Disease and Alzheimer’s Disease-Related Dementias research (partnering with NIA), and the new HEAL Initiative (with NIDA) to enhance pain management and improve treatments for opioid misuse and addiction. The strongest message to ESI was that the institute has a payline boost for ESI only for R01 mechanisms, not R21, R03 or U01 (or multi-PI proposals with a non-ESI PI). NINDS encourages early career researchers to apply through R01 mechanisms, highlighting that alignment with large initiatives may further help their funding chances.

The session continued with a presentation from the NIA. Their main focus in the neurosciences space is predictably in Alzheimer’s Disease and Alzheimer’s Disease-Related Dementias. The NIA general payline is 20%-23% depending on funding mechanism, but it is 28%-31% for AD/ADRD topics. These have temporarily been reduced due to the continuing resolution that the NIH is operating under. The NIA then highlighted three new R03 small research grant calls in AD/ADRD: PAS-19-391, PAS-19-392, and PAS-19-393. Their strong message to ESI was to utilize all resources available. The NIH generally encourages researchers to contact institute personnel to ask questions about funding mechanisms and the fit of their research to the different Institutes.

The session closed with a presentation from a NIDA senior staff member. NIDA currently has a $1.4B budget, of which ~$264M is dedicated to AIDS research and ~$250M to opioid-related research. New institute interests focus on the effect of cannabis on the most vulnerable populations: prenatal, adolescents, and older adults. NIDA highlighted that different NIH institutes may fund different aspects of cannabis studies, so it is crucial to check with each agency to ensure that the proposal fits their mandates. Their opioid funding efforts are aggregated under the HEAL Initiative. Finally, NIDA highlighted the ABCD Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development program and emphasized that this is an open science effort, so data is available for further studies.

If anyone has any questions regarding SfN, the recent annual meeting, or if you are also a member of SfN and would like to connect Ines, send an email to ines_tomas_pereira@brown.edu.