Mentoring Committee: Survey Says…

By Scott Balderson and Kathy Partlow

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Scott Balderson
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Kathy Partlow

The Mentoring Committee recently surveyed the 2018-2019 Mentoring Program participants, which has 60 pairs (the largest group yet!). We had 40 out of 86 participants complete the survey (27 mentees, 9 mentors, and 4 both). As part of the survey, we received feedback on some ways we can improve the resources we developed for mentor-mentee pairs, including the OnBoarding Packet tools and webinar series that are available to all NORDP members. These can serve as a framework and guide for being intentional about your professional development. Topics include a guide to initial conversations, a self-assessment worksheet, mapping your network, and individual professional development plans. While the OnBoarding resources are optional for matched pairs, participants that employed the materials found them very or somewhat useful (100% for the tools and 95% for the webinars) for their mentoring relationship. These tools and webinars are always available to you through the NORDP Mentoring Toolkit on the NORDP website.

Also from the survey, we are excited to see that most of this year’s participants are new to the program. Specifically, it was the first year in the program for 73% of the mentees. In addition, 77% of mentors are serving as a mentor for the first time. While glad that the program is serving new mentees and mentors, we would like to encourage past program participants to consider re-engaging as mentors or mentees. Regardless of where we are in our career path, we can all benefit from having both mentee and mentor relationships. The most common benefits, perhaps, can be summarized using words from this year’s participants in response to our query on the most useful element of the program: having a “sounding board” with an “outside perspective” where we can have “honest conversations” and “get to know new RD professionals and learn from them.”

We plan to present the full survey results at the conference so stay tuned. Have other thoughts or ideas you’d like to share with the Mentoring Committee? Feel free to leave a comment or email us at mentorprogram@nordp.org

 

Member Services Committee Update – Fall 2018

This is the first in a series of periodic updates on activities of the Member Services Committee (MSC).

NORDP membership continues at an all-time high, hovering around 900 members. This is 100 more than last year at this time. What an exciting time to be a NORDP member!

MSC’s primary purpose is to recruit and retain members. We also work with other NORDP committees to improve member resources and services to enhance the member experience.

A few of the many projects we are advancing during NORDP’s FY19 are described briefly here:

  • Ron Fleischman and Kendra Mingo are co-leading the PUI Subcommittee to engage and increase the number of active NORDP members working at PUIs. Ron is spearheading a PUI “Affinity Group” application to the NORDP Board.  PUI Affinity Group status would provide opportunities to increase support and resources to this group of members.
  • Vanity Campbell is leading the MSI Subcommittee’s efforts to enhance outreach to current members and recruit potential members working at MSI’s, which includes HBCU, Hispanic Serving, Tribal, and other underrepresented groups.
  • Samar Sengupta and Maile Henson are researching potential interest in establishing new NORDP member types for retirees (to help retain and share extensive knowledge of the RD field) and for postdocs who might be recruited to the RD field.
  • Gretchen Kiser is leading the Salary Survey Subcommittee’s efforts to update NORDP’s salary survey, with plans to launch in early 2019 and present results at the 2019 NORDP Conference in Providence, RI.

MSC knows that NORDP members are doing great things at their home institutions and we want to hear about them. Please tell us about your special achievements or recognitions so we can share them with our NORDP colleagues around the world. (Send to MSC member Dan Campbell at dcampbel@odu.edu.)

If you would like to learn more about the Member Services Committee please contact our chair Kathy Cataneo at k.cataneo@unh.edu or co-chair Kay Tindle at Kayla.Tindle@ttu.edu.

NORDP Board Member Cameo: Kathy Cataneo

Who: Kathy Cataneo, Director of Research Development
Where: University of New Hampshire
Number of years in Research Development: 9
Length of NORDP membership: 9 years

When and how did you enter the field? What kind of RD work do you do?Kathy Cataneo - May 2018.jpg

I have been supporting faculty research and scholarship at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) for 35 years, 25 of which as Director of the Office of Sponsored Research. In that position, I was responsible for 26 staff conducting all pre- and post-award activities at UNH. During that time I became quite familiar with the interests and strengths of all our active researchers, and contemporaneously experienced a growing appreciation of and proclivity toward helping the faculty become more strategic, competitive, and successful in their proposal writing.

In 2010, I was appointed as founding director of the UNH Research Development Office. I create and implement programs to help UNH researchers identify the best funding sources for their work and write the most competitive proposals possible. I have also mentored UNH masters’ level students to enter the RD field.

What’s your history with NORDP? How have you engaged with the organization (committee work, conferences attended/presented)?

After receiving generous advice and inspiration from Holly Falk-Krzesinksi, I joined NORDP in 2010, attended my first NORDP Conference in 2011, and have attended every Conference since then. In 2011-12, I helped Anne Windham (Brown University) establish a Northeast regional NORDP group, and became NORDP NE Chair in 2014. At the national level, I have been a panelist at Conference sessions and co-presented a pre-conference workshop with Ann McGuigan in 2016. I have been a member of the NORDP Communications Working Group and the Member Services Committee (MSC), and I currently serve as MSC chair and a member of the Revenue and Finance Committee. I have also been fortunate to be a mentor to an outstanding NORDP mentee.

What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP (new colleagues, connections to institutions where you previously had no point of contact)?

My initial NORDP networking began in NORDP NE, where I met new colleagues from large, research intensive institutions to mid-sized to small institutions, and formed lasting friendships with so many people. We share information and resources, invite each other and our faculty to attend regional meetings with federal program officers, and meet formally as a group at least twice a year. The regional networking became a great springboard for building lasting professional and personal relationships with colleagues across the country. From the beginning, I have been impressed by and grateful for the openness and willingness displayed by every NORDP member to share knowledge and resources so willingly with each other.

What inspired you to run for a position and serve on the NORDP board?

In NORDP’s history, there had been just one Board member from the Northeast (Anne Windham) before I ran. I wanted to bring a sustained Northeast “voice” to the Board. I was also passionate about increasing the Board’s appreciation for the role that regional groups play in nurturing RD as a profession and in serving as a pipeline for increasing membership at the national level. I had great support and encouragement to run from my NORDP NE colleagues, including Peg AtKisson, another lifelong colleague and friend.

What initiative are you most excited about in your role as a board member?

After working in my first year on the Board to craft and gain Board approval for an “Affinity Group” policy – which brought official NORDP recognition of regional groups to the fore — what excites me the most is serving as NORDP’s Member Services Committee Chair. With a vision established by former chair Terri Soelberg (who was my Board mentor), this committee’s members have worked diligently to increase the NORDP membership to new heights, and to implement creative retention measures to keep members engaged. Personally, I enjoy interacting with new members, helping to address issues they may have when they first join, and connecting them to others within NORDP to enhance their member experience. (Akin to on-boarding new faculty!)

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.

 

NORDP Board Member Cameo: Jennifer Lyon Gardner

Who: Jennifer Lyon Gardner, PhD, Associate Vice President for Research
Where: The University of Texas at Austin
Number of Years in Research Development: 10
Length of NORDP membership: almost 6 years

When and how did you enter the field? What kind of RD work do you do?Web-Jennifer_Lyon-8798-Edit

I was an analytical chemist, then a grant writer, then a program manager for the center grants that I wrote that were funded, and now a full-fledged RD professional. Over the span of about 10 years at UT, I worked first in an interdisciplinary research unit, then in a Dean’s office providing college-level RD support, and since 2016, as Associate VPR. I design campus-level initiatives that promote collaborative research, including UT’s research grand challenges initiative, Bridging Barriers, which involves more than 800 faculty and researchers. I also lead a campus-level RD team, which provides competitive intelligence and proposal development guidance to interdisciplinary teams of researchers. One of the most exciting things I’ve done recently is run a flash-funding retreat for newly minted associate professors – I’ll tell you more about this in Providence, if my conference abstract is selected!

What’s your history with NORDP? How have you engaged with the organization (committee work, conferences attended/presented)?

When I started my Dean’s office job in 2012, my dean suggested that I look into NORDP. It just so happened that the NORDP conference that year was taking place down the street from me, in Austin. My involvement in NORDP has steadily increased over the nearly six years that I’ve been a member. I have served on the annual conference planning committees for the past four conferences, and I co-chaired the 2016 conference in Orlando. In 2016 I was honored to receive the NORDP Rising Star of Excellence Award in recognition of my contributions to the organization. I am currently serving as Secretary (2018-2019).

What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP (new colleagues, connections to institutions where you previously had no point of contact)? 

Too many to count! Some informal mentors who deserve a shout-out in this blog post for the inspiration they’ve given me include Peggy Sundermeyer (former NORDP Treasurer; I consider her NORDP’s fairy godmother); Gretchen Kiser (who tapped me to co-chair with her in Orlando); and Karen Fletcher (current Vice President and former Secretary of NORDP). The community spirit of NORDP gave me the confidence to cold-call the RD leadership at UCLA (NORDP members Michelle Popowitz and Cassie Rauser) to invite them to give a research grand challenges talk with me at the 2017 conference in Denver. Since then, a university-led grand challenges community of practice has been formed, which produced a really valuable best practices report (with several NORDP members contributing).

What inspired you to run for a position and serve on the NORDP board?

Several NORDP leaders that I admire encouraged me to go for it. The opportunity to give back to the organization that has been a never-ending source of inspiration and encouragement for my professional life really appealed to me. We all know that what makes NORDP awesome is the dedication of our members – serving on the Board, to me, seemed like a great way to rededicate myself to the organization.

What initiative are you most excited about in your role as a board member?

The Conference Co-Chairs are orchestrating what could be our best NORDP conference yet – new presentation formats and new opportunities to network are coming, and they look extremely cool. Also, I love what the Communications Working Group is doing to keep us all up-to-date on the latest blog posts and NORDP news. Meanwhile, I’m geeking out behind the scenes as Secretary, bringing order to our internal processes and file storage systems. That might not sound very glamorous, but the satisfaction of crossing tasks off a list can be a great thing, you know?

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.

Webinar: Developing a Strong Abstract for the 2019 NORDP Conference

The deadline for proposals for 1-hour or 2-hour presentations, roundtable discussions, posters, and lightning talks is November 25, 11:59 pm PST. You can submit your abstract HERE. See the webinar below for tips on developing a strong abstract.

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.