NORDP 2022 Plenary: Estrada Focuses on Kindness-Affirming Inclusion

Mica Estrada, NORDP April 28 Plenary Speaker

When someone is kind, they support the dignity of another person. When mentors are kind, they convey a sense of safety, which is good for learning, retention, and attention. NORDP conference attendees will learn more about the benefits of kindness and tips to bring new perspectives on kindness to our work.

“Kindness affirms inclusion,” says Dr. Mica Estrada, Associate Professor in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Institute for Health and Aging at the University of California at San Francisco’s School of Nursing. She will be the NORDP 2022 conference plenary speaker at 11:00 a.m. eastern time on Thurs., Apr. 28, discussing “Why Kindness Is Important when Mentoring in an Interconnected World.”

As a social psychologist, Estrada studies how people integrate into their field. “We look at how quality mentorship helps students feel they can do the science, develop their identity as scientists, and how they share community values,” she explains.

Estrada says kindness has always been at the forefront of her scholarship. “At about four years old, my first memory was when a US ship went into Chinese water. I remember thinking, will there be a war, why do we hurt each other?” She continues thinking about that later question in her research, and chooses to focus on how people connect to each other, and specifically on kindness as the solution.

She compares her passion for kindness in mentoring to tending a garden. “Instead of spending time pulling weeds, I decided to put effort into growing what we want to reduce the space for the things we don’t want to grow,” she says.

Estrada will share findings from her years of research with NORDP conference attendees, highlighting results that are relevant to mentoring students and faculty or working with other research development colleagues.

“We’ll be talking about ‘quality mentorship’,” she says. The first focus is on instrumental support, or the “nuts and bolts” activities, such as how to access physical spaces or scholarly journals. This will differ in each situation. The second focus is on psycho-social support, such as empathy, listening, and emotional presence. Again, the details will differ based on the relationship, but the concept is important.

Estrada’s research is well funded by the NSH, NIH, and HHMI. She says she finds grantwriting to be a creative, labor-intensive challenge as she explains what she wants to explore while being concrete and persuasive. She draws upon past experiences with non-profit groups and work with development officers. She is also engaged in community-service roles, serving on the National Research Council Committee’s Roundtable on the Future of STEM Education; the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine consensus study on Advancing Anti-Racism, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in STEM Organizations; and a NASA Minority University Research and Education Programs advisory committee.

Estrada focuses her research and time on understanding how to increase inclusion and equity in our education system.  Her research methods identify educational interventions that facilitate integration into a community and increased engagement in the normative behaviors of that community for all students. She encourages us all to amplify what we want within our academic and professional environment, and she sees ample opportunity to do this.

“We’re at an interesting time in history,” she suggests. “COVID has shaken up the way we work. There’s an opportunity to not go back, but to go forward in a way that serves us as human beings.”

Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2022 updates.

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 2022 Plenary: Dyhia Belhabib: Diversity Matters Now

Dyhia Belhabib, NORDP 2022 Conference Tuesday Plenary Speaker

Diversity in research is much more than a good idea; it can be the key to survival, says Dyhia Belhabib, Principal Investigator at Ecotrust Canada.

“Diversity matters; otherwise it can be deadly,” she says. “We’re in the midst of the climate crisis. It’s happening now. We need solutions and strategies to become more resilient now.” She suggests some of the best solutions will be brought by diversity.

“People often ask me how I got into this field, and I tell them I understand what it stems from. I don’t look like most others who study the ocean,” Belhabib explains her passion for diversity in STEM fields.

For example, as a child growing up in Tazmalt, Algeria, she and her family dealt with droughts for decades. “I’ve carried water from the well. I know how to be resilient, how to save water,” she says.

Belhabib will be the NORDP 2022 conference plenary speaker at 1:00 p.m. on Tues., Apr. 26, discussing minorities and equity in STEM research. She will share experiences working at the intersection of sustainability and ocean criminality.  A highly published scholar and devoted advocate for social justice in conservation, elimination of illegal fishing, inclusive science, and empowering minorities in research, she founded spyglass.fish, an online platform for monitoring illegal fishing worldwide, and Poplar and Ivy, a magazine that supports underrepresented voices in science and conservation.

She shared a recent experience consulting with an academic institution on diversity issues. “We were shut down the moment we asked for diversity of perspectives,” she recalls the moment when she was first introduced to an all-white panel. “I wasn’t surprised to see such a panel, but I was shocked at the reaction.”

To her, diversity represents a matter of life and death. “Lack of diversity can be deadly,” she says. For example, death can arise when doctors don’t understand what measles look like on a black person’s skin. She emphasizes the importance of bringing diversity to science and learning how to open STEM careers to minorities.

“We all have biases we need to uncover,” she says as she turns her attention to her NORDP plenary presentation. “It’s very important to be aware. We tend to export what we perceive to be the best solution, regardless of the situation and context. Perhaps we need to be a bit more creative, to circumvent the political climate and accepted narratives to pursue effective change.”

Research development professionals have tended to be colonial, what Belhabib equates to hindering local expertise and supporting ill-adapted solutions in areas where minorities prevail. In other words, from Belhabib’s perspective, RD has tended to support established researchers and pre-existing solutions.

“Research development professionals might consider how they transfer bias from individuals to the system, essentially preventing people from getting into the system. It’s a matter of strategy,” she suggests.

The reward can be great: diverse perspectives and diverse thoughts challenge scientific research, which needs to be challenged, Belhabib says. “As a result, those proposals have more meaningful outcomes.”

Follow @NORDP_official on Twitter for all the latest #NORDP2022 updates.

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.

Learn More About the Strategic Alliances Committee

Mark your Calendar!!

NORDP members are invited to join the Strategic Alliances Committee’s quarterly meeting on Thursday, Mar. 17, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. eastern time at this Zoom Link: https://tennessee.zoom.us/j/675272311.

Those who are new to the committee will learn more about its three key themes. NORDP members who serve as liaisons will provide updates on their respective organizations, and several liaisons will share success stories from organizations like ARIS, INORMS, and APLU. Learn more about what it means to be a liaison and how to apply. This is an excellent way to engage with NORDP and others in the research development universe.

Weigh In with Your Professional Insights

The International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS) asks NORDP members to complete a survey about the profession of research management, which encompasses research development, research administration, and related professions.

As institutional members of INORMS, NORDP members have participated in the two previous world-wide surveys. Results of this survey will provide us all with a third snapshot of our profession across the globe, building a longitudinal dataset about our profession. 

With your participation in the study, we hope to provide recommendations for further training, professional development, staff recruitment, and retention. The survey can be found at https://inorms.net/activities/raaap-taskforce/raaap-survey-2022/. Feel free to forward this email to your research management colleagues.

(Please note that the survey must not be forwarded to Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Syria, or the Crimea Region of the Ukraine without the approval of the PI/Co-PI.  These countries/regions are subject to certain comprehensive economic sanctions and licensing requirements may apply.)

You can find out more on the project website: https://inorms.net/activities/raaap-taskforce/

NORDP’s Strategic Alliances Committee Resets Goals, Invites Member Participation

NORDP’s Strategic Alliances Committee (SAC) focuses on building reciprocal working relationships with external entities.  SAC volunteers coordinate dozens of liaison partnerships, a strong set of conference sponsors, and NORDP’s growing reputation as the “go-to” place for all things resource development. The committee invites you to join this effort!

The committee’s leadership team is working on a comprehensive action plan for the upcoming year, and NORDP members are invited to attend the next quarterly meeting to learn more on Thurs., Mar. 17, at 2:00 p.m. eastern time at this Zoom link: https://tennessee.zoom.us/j/675272311. For more information, contact spound@utk.edu.

Virtual pilot short course for early career RD professionals

November 8, 2021 – December 17, 2021 • Seats are limited!

REGISTER NOW

What is research development (RD)? How is it done? Even professionals who have worked extensively with funded research and researchers throughout their careers may feel like they only understand their specific jobs and responsibilities. Because RD roles in organizations and institutions vary (and units are often siloed), it can be hard to get a full picture of RD as a field and how it fits into the research enterprise. RD101 will help you understand the field, expand your existing skill set, and explore new ways to support research at your institution.

NORDP is once again offering a pilot virtual short course, RD 101, which introduces the field of RD. This 12.5-hour course (not including readings and other coursework) presents a framework for understanding who RD professionals are, the skills that make them effective in their roles, the hows and whys of what they do, and the resources they rely on.

There are no prerequisites for RD 101; it is intended for new RD professionals (those with fewer than two years of experience in RD) or those considering becoming RD professionals. The instructors are experienced RD professionals from a range of institutions (e.g., centralized and decentralized, R1s, PUIs) and have designed the course around the skills and information they wish they’d had when they first entered the profession.

Course topics include:

  • What is RD? Who is the RD Professional?
  • Components and Elements of the RD Process—Institutional and Professional Cultures and How They Affect the Work of RD
  • RFPs and Proposals: Requirements and Constraints
  • Helping Researchers Produce Effective Proposals

In addition to the weekly meetings, you will have additional activities to contextualize yourself and your position within the RD profession. The course will help you to develop a personal career development plan.

General sessions: Mondays 1:00pm – 2:30pm ET (November 8, 15, 29, December 6 & 13)

Breakout sessions (choose one per week):

  • Thursdays 12:00pm – 1:00pm ET (November 18, December 2, 9, & 16)
  • Fridays 12:00pm – 1:00pm ET (November 12*, 19, December 3, 10, & 17)

* Two break out rooms will be hosted on Friday, November 12 to accommodate the Veteran’s Day Holiday

This pilot will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Please confirm that you will be able to attend ALL course meetings and one breakout session prior to registering. There will not be a waitlist. There is no charge for this pilot workshop, but registrants must be NORDP members. Future RD 101 offerings will have a registration fee. Future offerings will be announced in early 2022.

Registration is limited to 25 participants. Registration closes Tuesday, November 2, 2021.

For questions or more information, please contact Joanna.Downer@duke.edu or Faye.Farmer@asu.edu.

Registration link HERE.

Facilitators:

Paige Belisle, Harvard University – While pursuing a MFA in Writing at the University of New Hampshire, Paige Belisle discovered her career path by serving as a graduate student intern in UNH’s Research Development Office. Through NORDP, she met the members of Harvard University’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences Research Development Office and joined their team in 2016. She serves faculty members by identifying funding opportunities and providing proposal development support. Her current specialty is in providing Research Development outreach to new faculty members in the arts and humanities, as well as assembling monthly funding opportunities newsletters.

Katie Shoaf, Appalachian State University – Katie Shoaf is the Associate Director for Grants Resources and Services at Appalachian State University. She holds an M.A. and M.L.S. from Appalachian State. She has been a NORDP member since 2017 and serves on the Mentoring Committee and the Professional Development Committee. In the Office of Research at Appalachian, she administers limited submission competitions, internal competitions, and the internal peer review process. She is also charged with developing the international research process and opportunities for the Office of Research.

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.

International Network of Research Management Societies (INORMS) Report: The Hiroshima Statement

The Hiroshima Statement on Essential Practice of Research Management and Administration was developed as part of the INORMS 2021 Congress, which was originally planned to be held in Hiroshima, Japan. On May 24, 2021, the INORMS Council convened a virtual meeting. During the meeting, Dr. Koetsu Yamazaki, Chair of RMAN-J, the Research Manager and Administrator Network in Japan and host of the international Congress, completed the Hiroshima Statement by signing the document.

Top left, Dr. Yamazaki signs the Hiroshima Statement during the virtual INORMS 2021 Congress.

The statement (see link here) highlights a set of five principles and responsibilities common to the collective memberships of INORMS member associations. Research Managers around the world face similar challenges and aspire to a common goal: to improve our local, national, and global research landscapes. INORMS Council hopes to promote interactions, sharing of best practices and joint activities between member societies to benefit the professional development of individual members worldwide.

Karen Eck, Assistant Vice President for Research at Old Dominion University and Co-chair of the Strategic Alliances Committee, is currently representing NORDP on the INORMS Council. Kim Patten, Assistant Vice President, Research Development at the University of Arizona, is representing NORDP on the INORMS Working Group.

NORDP New Board Member Cameo – Antje Harnisch

Who: Antje Harnisch, Assistant Vice Provost for Research

Where: Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Number of Years in RD:  RA and RD 20+

Length of NORDP Membership: 5 years

When and how did you enter the field? What kind of RD work do you do?

I entered the field through Research Administration 20-plus years ago. I spent the first 15 years at a land-grant R1 university, and I’ve been at a small technical university for the past seven years. There I have helped set up a research development office (RSI), participated in recruitment efforts, mentored the hires, and facilitated attempts at defining roles and responsibilities between OSP and RSI. Our team helps faculty with their proposals, provides training, and runs internal grant opportunities and limited submissions. 

What’s your history with NORDP? How have you engaged with the organization?

I have participated at the regional level for a number of years and have been involved at the national level for the past four years. I have presented at a regional conference, and we have hosted one at WPI, which was a great experience. It was truly a pleasure to work with Northeast NORDP leadership to put the conference together and arrange logistics to make the event a success. I’ve also participated in leadership roundtables and found them consistently informative and inspiring exchanges of information, experiences, best practices, and last but not least, a sense of community. I always went away with new ideas and feeling a sense of belonging. 

What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP ?

I’ve appreciated the role that NORDP has played in representing and shaping this profession. I have been consistently impressed with the colleagues that make up the group and the programming the organization provides. NORDP colleagues have proven to be a wonderful resource for me professionally and kindred spirits on a personal level too.

What are you most excited about as a board member?

I appreciate sitting on the NORDP board as an opportunity to learn and grow through working with and learning from colleagues who I respect and with whom I share passions, goals, and values. I’m excited about contributing to the implementation of the current strategic plan and engage in future strategizing to move NORDP and the profession into the future.

Compiled by Sharon Pound, Communications Working Group

NORDP New Board Member Cameo – Melinda Laroco Boehm

Who: Melinda Laroco Boehm, Director, Office of Research Development

Where: University of California, Merced

Number of Years in RD: 6.5

Length of NORDP Membership: 6.5

When and how did you enter the field? What kind of RD work do you do?

I came into RD just after completing my Ph.D. in Medical Sociology (2014). Given we were a military family, we had orders for an international move just a few months after I completed my degree, so I purposefully delayed entering the job market. Looking back, I am grateful to have been afforded the time to really look for what I wanted to do and contribute, which was somewhere in the vicinity of an intersection of research, a deadline-driven environment, community engagement, and strategic initiatives. After those international orders were changed to California, I saw just the opportunity for what I wanted to pursue: Research Development. At UC Merced, we are a centralized unit, supporting all schools and organized research units in strategic grantseeking, proposal development support to faculty researchers, and initiatives to grow our research enterprise.

What’s your history with NORDP? How have you engaged with the organization?

You could say my career in RD aligns exactly with my time in NORDP. The NORDP 2015 Conference in Bethesda was (technically) my first day on the job. After driving for three days on a cross-country move, I interviewed at UC Merced the day after we arrived in California. Susan Carter was conference co-chair at the time and thought it was perfect timing for me to fly back cross country to the conference. It was there I met most of my new colleagues.

Since then I’ve remained active on the Professional Development Committee. I’ve attended every conference since 2015 and participated in the annual conferences in numerous capacities: Conference Planning Committee, mentee activities, workshop facilitations, panel discussions, roundtable discussions, and participation in Implicit Bias Training (2019). Over the past year I’ve remained PD Committee Co-Chair, engaged in Conversation Roadblock Sessions, presented at our Pacific Region Meeting, contributed to the CCC Task Force, and am currently in the LEAD Peer Mentoring Group. I also fully support (and encourage) my staff to contribute and participate in any capacity for the organization.

What relationships have you built as a result of NORDP?

I’ve built myriad relationships as a result of NORDP. Former colleagues have become my conference workshop co-presenters and dear friends. I’ve created my own version of a Board of Advisors made up of my peers/peer mentors, and their counsel, strategic advice, and sarcasm have helped me redirect my focus many times and solve challenges in positive and meaningful ways.

What are you most excited about as a board member?

I’m excited to better understand the infrastructure and governance aspect of the Board. If you know me, you’d know I am detail-oriented with a fondness (understatement) for organization, so I am looking forward to that aspect.

However, I’m most excited about meeting more NORDP members, hearing their thoughts and ideas, and helping to serve as a catalyst in elevating their innovative ideas to create effective (and sustainable) change. As a collective, NORDP members are some of the most innovative and strategic thinkers I’ve ever known, and I want to help ensure we are meeting the needs and interests of our members in a helpful, culturally-competent, and mission-driven way.

Compiled by Sharon Pound, Communications Working Group