2017 Conference Cameo: Elisabeth Andrews

#NORDP2017 starts Monday, May 8 in Denver, CO. Keep checking back here at the blog and on our Twitter feed (@NORDP_official) for live conference updates. Register here: http://www.nordp.org/conferences.
_______________________________________________________

Who: Elisabeth Andrews, Writer and Editor
Where: Solo Consultant
Number of years in research development: 3
Length of NORDP membership: New member
Number of NORDP conferences attended: 2017 will be my first.
How do you unwind? Hiking – hope to do some in Colorado!

I’m a recovering journalist who stumbled into research development and fell in love. In the three years since, I’ve had the opportunity to travel to Singapore for a Gates Foundation project, meet with a nine-nation team in Cardiff for a European Commission proposal, and work in Ghana on an effort funded by the United Nations Foundation. Back home in Bloomington, Indiana, I am fortunate to collaborate regularly with Indiana University’s research development team, such as serving as the lead writer for the university’s MacArthur 100&Change proposal. Jamie Kirkley in IU’s Proposal Development Services tipped me off to NORDP, and I’m excited to attend my first conference this year.

ElisabethAndrewsHeadshotMy journey started out with a History BA, after which I worked for several years as a personal trainer and yoga instructor before completing an MPH degree. This combination of experience in humanities, science, and small business environments allowed me to embark on an eclectic freelance career that ranged from writing arts and culture articles for Indianapolis Monthly magazine to starting a new publication for the Institute for Business Analytics. Because a typical day might swing from writing cheeky daily deals for a coupon site to crafting stewardship reports for major funders, I honed an ability to tailor each message to its specific platform and audience.

The difficult part of the freelance writing lifestyle, which I maintained for a decade, was neither the frenzy nor the hustle. Instead, it was the heartbreak of connecting only tangentially with extraordinary people and projects before immediately moving on to the next story. So when a string of faculty members began asking for my help communicating their ideas to non-specialists, I was overjoyed to experience something a freelancer rarely encounters: collegiality.

It has been an enormous privilege to spend the past few years working directly with researchers to overcome barriers to publication and financial support. I’ve been able to apply not only my experience in marketing and public relations but also the storytelling skills required to unite multidisciplinary efforts and forecast impact.

My hope in joining NORDP is to expand that circle of colleagues while learning from leaders in the field. I am particularly looking forward to the sessions on “Fostering Transdisciplinary Research” and the brilliantly titled “Herding Cats and Teaching Them to Fish.”

I’m grateful for the opportunity to introduce myself through this profile, and I hope you’ll introduce yourself to me at the conference.
_______________________________________________________

We hope to see you at the 2017 NORDP Research Development Conference, which will be held May 8-10 in Denver, CO. For more information about the conference program or to register, visit http://www.nordp.org/conferences. Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2017 updates.

If you’d like to be featured in a Conference Cameo, let us know at rdconf@nordp.org

2017 Conference Cameo: Trinh D. Eng

#NORDP2017 starts Monday, May 8 in Denver, CO. Keep checking back here at the blog and on our Twitter feed (@NORDP_official) for live conference updates. Register here: http://www.nordp.org/conferences.
_______________________________________________________

Who: Trinh D. Eng, Mega-Grants Initiative Projects Officer
Where: New York University
Number of years in research development: 6
Length of NORDP membership: 1
Number of NORDP conferences attended: This will be my first.
What is the most interesting place you’ve visited? My childhood home in Vietnam, now a school for girls.

I am looking forward to meeting and learning from my fellow research development peers in Denver at my very first NORDP conference this May.

I backed into the field of research development through my love for raising funds for research and other programs that advance knowledge and solutions to vexing questions and critical challenges. I joined the NYU Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) in December 2016 after nearly six years in program management and research development at the NYU School of Law.  Trinh_Duong_Eng

Now, as Projects Officer of the Mega-Grants Initiative, I work closely with my terrific colleagues in OSP, with faculty members and with the Office of the Senior Vice Provost to support the development of cross-disciplinary approaches to major research projects. The Mega-Grants Initiative at NYU was established in FY 2013 by the Office of the Senior Vice Provost to support faculty members across NYU’s 18 schools and multiple campuses to pursue cross-disciplinary research projects. With an understanding that securing funding for these complex projects is often demanding, my work on the Mega-Grants Initiative includes meeting with faculty members regularly to review early-stage project ideas, assist in the development of research teams, target institutional resources to support promising projects and see the grant proposals through final submission.

I have had a long history with NYU and am a proud MBA graduate of the NYU Stern School of Business, where I specialized in change management, digital media and economics. Prior to joining NYU, I spent nearly 10 years as a member management teams for public and private foundations. Through those experiences, I have had some insight into the decision-making process from the perspective of the sponsor or funder.

In the realm of fun or other facts, I was born in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and spent two years as a child in the refugee camps of Malaysia before resettling on the suburban edges of rural America. I was also the first undergraduate from NYU to receive the Echoing Green Fellowship for social entrepreneurship. In my previous position, I was quite unsuccessful in developing a running club.

_______________________________________________________

We hope to see you at the 2017 NORDP Research Development Conference, which will be held May 8-10 in Denver, CO. For more information about the conference program or to register, visit http://www.nordp.org/conferences. Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2017 updates.

If you’d like to be featured in a Conference Cameo, let us know at rdconf@nordp.org

2017 Conference Cameo: Chad Walton

#NORDP2017 starts Monday, May 8 in Denver, CO. Keep checking back here at the blog and on our Twitter feed (@NORDP_official) for live conference updates. Register here: http://www.nordp.org/conferences.
_______________________________________________________

Who: Chad Walton, Research Program Officer
Where: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Number of years in research development: I’m just starting out.
Length of NORDP membership: 1
Number of NORDP conferences attended: 2017 will be my first!
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I aspired to be a Dentist.

My journey into Research Development (RD) can be best described as “following the white rabbit down the hole.” After receiving my PhD from the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM) in 2006, I completed my post-doctoral training and was promoted to Assistant Professor in 2011 (UHM). In 2014 I took on the role of the Director of Trauma Research for the State of Hawaii’s Trauma System, with a focus on promoting statewide trauma-related interdisciplinary, inter-institutional and translational research. Taking that big step away from being a principal investigator and toward a primarily RD role was my first venture into the rabbit hole, and I haven’t looked back since.Chad Walton photo

My current role is as the Research Program Officer (RPO) in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research (OVCR) at UHM, effectively completing my transition from faculty to RD professional. The RPO position affords me the opportunity to work with a tremendously diverse and innovative faculty, eager for campus-wide collaborative research initiatives. The journey thus far has been a very rewarding one.

I learned about NORDP from a colleague who has attended numerous NORDP conferences. She suggested NORDP as a great resource and was fully supportive of me attending the annual conference. I have only been a member since July, but have already been impressed by the responsive interactions on the NORDP listserv, as well as the available resources.

One of my first tasks at UHM is to develop and implement a web-based faculty networking tool to aid in identifying teams for collaborative grants. The advice and individual “lessons learned” that NORDP members have shared with me have been invaluable in ensuring I don’t repeat mistakes or reinvent the wheel.

Even though I have yet to attend a NORDP conference, I’ve already found the collegiality amongst NORDP members to be tremendous. My goal in attending my first conference is to find best practices and meet as many experienced colleagues as I can in order to develop my network and skillset. With such a wealth of knowledge and experience within NORDP, I hope to absorb the experiences and continue down my rabbit hole, with a few more friends to enjoy the journey with.

Since I have yet to attend a conference, I cannot share any advice for other first-time conference-goers, but I can offer a subtle suggestion: Hawaii would be a great place to hold a future conference!

_______________________________________________________

We hope to see you at the 2017 NORDP Research Development Conference, which will be held May 8-10 in Denver, CO. For more information about the conference program or to register, visit http://www.nordp.org/conferences. Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2017 updates.

If you’d like to be featured in a Conference Cameo, let us know at rdconf@nordp.org

NORDP Administrative Update

Dear colleagues,

I wanted to let you all know that Keith Osterhage has decided to pursue alternative career opportunities and will no longer serve as NORDP’s Executive Director. We thank Keith for his service to NORDP and wish him well on his new path.

We are currently reviewing our administrative needs and association management service options going forward.

Best regards,

Gretchen

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the NORDP Pillars But Were Afraid to Ask

#NORDP2017 starts Monday, May 8 in Denver, CO. Keep checking back here at the blog and on our Twitter feed (@NORDP_official) for live conference updates. Register here: http://www.nordp.org/conferences.
_______________________________________________________

You won’t find the NORDP Pillars on the schedule-at-a-glance posted to the conference website, because we wanted to keep it lean and clean. But last year in Orlando, we rolled out a new concept for NORDP programming—the “Research Development Pillars,” as NORDP Past President Rachel Dresbeck called them in her welcome letter. As you’ll see when you get your bag at the registration desk in Denver and pull out the conference schedule book, we’re putting those pillars to a much more focused use this year.

Basically, the NORDP Pillars are like subject headings (top-level subject headings, for the librarians among us), or subject tracks. They provide a convenient way of grouping together content that involves common themes. It’s our hope that these headings will also help conference attendees find content that’s relevant to them and their interests and needs as they’re building their careers and expanding their professional horizons.

From a practical standpoint, using the pillars is a little bit like browsing the shelves in your local library. You looked up the exact book you wanted, and got a call number to tell you where to find it. But because call numbers also work a little bit like subject classifications, when you look to either side of the book you wanted originally (or a shelf or two up or down from that location), you find other books on the same general topic that you didn’t even know had been written. (To this day, I continue to find great resources I wouldn’t have known to look for just by reading the shelves around the one where I found the book I did go hunting for. One of many, many reasons why I love libraries. But I digress.)

There are four NORDP Pillars, and in what follows, I’m going to give a short description of each of them. I hope this will be helpful to you as we start using them more and more consistently to identify and track the content that NORDP provides to its members. (And if you have thoughts, questions, or suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment below, or to email me.)

The first pillar is RD Fundamentals, and it’s the one that most people are likely to think they understand right away: it’s all the stuff you need to know when you’re brand-new to research development.

Well, yes…and most definitely no. Yes, information and presentations grouped under this pillar are fundamental: anybody working in RD needs to have this at their fingertips.

But “fundamental” should not be confused with “basic” or “introductory.” Everything that someone new to RD would need to know in order to be effective in her job would be under this pillar—but not everything under this pillar is something that a brand-new RD professional either needs to know at that particular moment in his career, or even something that would necessarily make sense to him until he’d been working in the field for a year or two.

Information that is fundamental, but which may have limited scope or application, can also be grouped under the RD Fundamentals pillar. Some of us, for example, may work primarily or exclusively on center proposals, while for others, that may be a task that comes up only once or twice—or not at all. Limited submissions are another example of this kind of work: we run dozens of these each year at the University of Colorado, but for folks at a small research center with just a few active researchers, they might never need to run one.

Nevertheless, it’s good information to have available, because you can always file off the serial numbers and adapt something useful to a new context that is part of your daily responsibilities. You could, for example, take some of the work about how to build a cohesive theme for a research center (and select appropriate researchers or scholars to complement that theme) and apply it to building an interdisciplinary team for any kind of a collaborative proposal. Or you might adapt some processes from how to run a successful limited submission competition and use that as a starting point for your proposal process if you’re responsible for distributing seed funds.

The next pillar is LDRD, which stands for “Leadership Development in Research Development.” Once you know what the acronym refers to, this one is fairly self-explanatory. Under this pillar you’ll find all the things you’ll need to know as you begin to think about where you might like to go during your career in research development (and I’m not just talking about where the next NORDP conference will be located). If you’re beginning to make the transition from a line staffer to a manager or a strategist, this is the pillar to look for on ways to make that transition smoother.

But we’re defining “leadership” very broadly in deciding what fits under this pillar. Yes, of course, this is where you’ll find presentations on being an effective leader—from above or below. This is also where we’ll talk about mentoring and the many things mentors (and their mentees) can do to enhance these important relationships. There are presentations under this pillar on different ways to structure an RD office in response to all of the factors that play into such decisions—and on how to make an effective case to your institutional leadership that such an office is necessary in the first place. Lastly, this is also the place where we’ll put all the tips and best practices information about taking care of ourselves as RD professionals—combating burn-out, keeping fresh and up-to-date on the latest trends and issues in the profession.

Speaking of the latest trends and issues, the third pillar is Hot Topics. This pillar covers both the newest of the new, but also the perennial (and sometimes contentious) topics that everybody in the field talks about. (Metrics is one good example, as is social media, or crowdfunding.) Think of these as burning questions—they’re hot because either there’s a lot of talk and hype around them, or they’re the beacons that light our way as we try to navigate through changing times and uncertain futures.

The fourth pillar is one that we didn’t get to use much in this year’s program, but we hope to be able to increase its prominence in years to come, and that’s Funders. This pillar is everything to do with sponsors—not the fine people and organizations that sponsor our organization and its conference every year, but the people who give the people we work with the money to do the amazing things they’ve put their hearts and souls into coming up with while we help them position those ideas and craft superior proposals to attract those funds. These sessions can be updates from a sponsor about new policy changes or grant opportunities that are coming down the pike, or about how to write an outstanding proposal for a certain funding opportunity or program, talking to program officers, making inquiries with private foundations—all that and more. In some cases, there might be overlap with information under this pillar and RD Fundamentals (everybody’s probably going to help with a few CAREER proposals over their careers, right?), but there’s also at least some component of sponsor-specific information that makes this tag appropriate as well.

Conference Marketing Committee

_______________________________________________________

We hope to see you at the 2017 NORDP Research Development Conference, which will be held May 8-10 in Denver, CO. For more information about the conference program or to register, visit http://www.nordp.org/conferences. Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2017 updates.

2017 Conference Cameo: Eric Wayne Dickey

#NORDP2017 starts Monday, May 8 in Denver, CO. Keep checking back here at the blog and on our Twitter feed (@NORDP_official) for live conference updates. Register here: http://www.nordp.org/conferences.
_______________________________________________________

Who: Eric Wayne Dickey, Research Program Administrator
Where: Oregon State University, College of Liberal Arts
Number of years in research development: 19
Length of NORDP membership: 2
Number of NORDP conferences attended: 2
How do you unwind? Reading and writing, family and staying healthy.

I started grant writing just to find funding to support my own interests in creative writing. On a whim, I attended an introduction to grant writing workshop put on by the Pacific Non-Profit Network in Medford, Oregon. This was back in 1998, before databases and internet search engines. I remember spending three or four days pouring over the big Foundation Directory books. I found four sources. I followed the directionEric Wayne Dickey pictures and applied to them all. I ended up winning $10,000 to help support a three-month writing residency at the Vermont Studio Center. The VSC awarded me half and the other half came from a grant made by the John Anson Kittredge Fund for Individual Artists administered by Harvard University Law School. I was thrilled, to say the least.

After that, I started helping other people find funding for their projects. I helped an organization solicit funds from several sources to deliver relief supplies to hurricane Mitch survivors in the Honduras, and I helped a few other people and groups. Then in 2002, I landed a job working for Oregon Sea Grant supporting their granting program in coastal and ocean sciences research and education. I worked for OSG for 12 years. It was a great place to be; we were doing some meaningful and much needed work. I learned a lot about grant writing from sitting on the awarding agency side of the table. But I always felt like the poet in the house of science, so I began looking for work supporting arts and humanities efforts.

I nearly jumped out of my skin when the College of Liberal Arts here at OSU posted the position I now have. I’ve been here since August of 2014. I help liberal arts faculty find and apply to funding for their research and scholarly activities. The terms “liberal arts” and “research” do not often get used in the same sentence, but we actually do quite a bit of research. I am pleased to say that in the short time I’ve been here, I’ve helped grow the program by 70%.

It was when I began my current position that I first heard about NORDP.  I attended a conference in 2015. I was sad to have to miss the 2016 conference, but I am very excited for the forthcoming 2017 conference in Denver. I feel a kinship with research development people; it’s like they are my people. At that first conference, I was invited to co-lead a discussion table on managing our own creativity while on the job. Many of us share similar challenges, and maintaining a positive outlook can be one of those challenges. The conferences are a place to share our struggles, learn new strategies, find opportunities, and celebrate our successes. It’s a good group of people.

Being a NORDP member has been very beneficial. The conferences are a great place to get ideas on how to inspire, motivate, and manage faculty pursuing funding. Similarly, the website and the e-mail list have also been very helpful. I am really looking forward to the conference. I hope to meet new people who have similar interests in liberal arts research development. Sometimes I think Anna Brailovsky (UMN) and I are the only ones! I am really looking forward to coming away from the conference with new ideas and new inspirations.

_______________________________________________________

We hope to see you at the 2017 NORDP Research Development Conference, which will be held May 8-10 in Denver, CO. For more information about the conference program or to register, visit http://www.nordp.org/conferences. Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2017 updates.

If you’d like to be featured in a Conference Cameo, let us know at rdconf@nordp.org

Deadline Approaching: NORDP Rising Star of Excellence Recognition Awards

Here’s your chance to nominate (by March 13) deserving recipients for a NORDP Rising Star of Excellence Recognition Award for outstanding contributions to NORDP. Awardees are recognized at the Annual Conference, and receive an engraved plaque and waived registration for a future NORDP Annual Conference.

Nomination Guidelines

Eligibility: NORDP members in good standing who have made significant volunteer contributions to NORDP are eligible. Such contributions can include NORDP committee service, conference volunteer, conference presenter, etc.

Nomination Process: Any NORDP member may nominate another member(s). Each nomination consists of a letter (see Rising Star of Excellence Recognition Award Nomination Form) detailing why the nominee deserves this recognition. The nomination should speak to past and current contributions to NORDP, the potential for future contributions to research development and/or NORDP, and examples of excellence in research development.

The nomination must also include a short (approx. 50 words) statement to be used as a citation if the nominee is selected for this recognition.

Please send completed nomination forms to k.cataneo@unh.edu on or before March 13, 2017.

Selection Process: The Scholarships and Recognition and Service Awards Subcommittee of the Member Services Committee will review the nomination materials and recommend no more than three nominees for consideration and approval by the Board of Directors. Nominations will be judged on the extent to which the candidate has served NORDP and the Research Development profession, as documented by compelling evidence and testimonials in the nomination letter. Awardees are announced at the NORDP Annual Conference.

Member Services Committee