NORDP Liaison Report: OCLC Report on Social Interoperability in Research Support

Jeff Agnoli in Ohio State’s Research Development Office serves as a NORDP liaison to OCLC, a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, research, and community programs. He recently shared an OCLC report, in which he and other RD interviewees participated.

Social Interoperability in Research Support: Cross-campus Partnerships and the University Research Enterprise, by Rebecca Bryant, Annette Dortmund, and Brian Lavoie, explores the social and structural norms that shape cross-campus collaboration and offers a conceptual model of key university stakeholders in research support. Information about their goals, interests, expertise, and the importance of cross-campus relationships was synthesized from interviews. The report describes the network of campus units involved in major categories of research support services and concludes with recommendations to establish and maintain successful cross-campus relationships. Download the free report at:  

Working to Overcome Conversation Roadblocks on Our Journey to Justice

Contributed by Committee on Inclusive Excellence (CIE) members Jane Garrity, Etta Ward and Gretchen Kiser

It seems like every week in 2020 brings a new avalanche of news stories on institutional racism, social injustice, and voices raised in protest. NORDP members, like so many others, are looking for ways to be leaders, allies, and agents of change for our communities and campuses. We acknowledge the tremendous exhaustion and pain of our BIPOC members from the many years of trauma and oppression and join in solidarity to share the burden of change agency. There is so much we could and should be doing toward racial and social justice. Despite the daunting task ahead of us all, we need to initiate the first and fundamental step toward effecting enduring meaningful change – personal, sometimes difficult conversations with our friends, colleagues, and families. Starting and maintaining conversations leads to other critical actions that will be needed to dismantle the systems, processes and procedures that make it possible for inequities and discriminatory practices to persist. Unfortunately, many ‘would-be’ allies face conversation roadblocks preventing them from this critical action step.

The Committee on Inclusive Excellence (CIE) is leading the charge to bring opportunities for dialogue to NORDP members that will move us beyond simply checking off boxes on a diversity plan or proclaiming that we are realizing our diversity mission goals. Until we all feel that we belong and are valued, we still have work to do toward becoming a more inclusive, welcoming, and actively anti-racist organization. The CIE hosted a series of discussion sessions over June and July, and again on September 30, that were guided by a framework tool – Conversation Roadblocks – developed by Catalyst (, a global nonprofit founded in 1962 that helps organizations accelerate inclusion and professional progress for women and other under-represented groups at work.

These sessions were open to all NORDP members who chose to participate and were centered on anti-Black racism and the associated structures of social injustice. These sessions invited participants into uncomfortable conversations on racism and focused on identifying and surmounting the specific fears and assumptions that keep us silent on this issue. Specifically, we discussed conversation roadblocks such as a sense that there is not really a problem to address, the fear of negative consequences if one speaks up, or an assumption that talking will not solve anything. Honestly addressing these roadblocks is the first step towards building a framework for future action to build a culture of anti-racism at both NORDP and our home institutions.

Each Conversation Roadblock event included an opportunity for participants to collectively set ground rules for engagement toward creating a safe space to openly share our thoughts and feelings and to respectfully listen to the perspectives and lived experiences of others. In breakout groups, we reviewed the short but powerful Conversation Roadblocks document and shared stories of how we have encountered conversation roadblocks in our own lives and where we still struggle. The groups then presented key points of their discussions, and participants brainstormed some next steps for our collective journey to justice.

Attendees testified to the power that even these initial conversations can have, e.g.:

“I had a colleague who is a person of color reveal that she had changed her birth name and spent her childhood trying hard to NOT be associated with a non-White race/ethnicity. I thought how exhausting that must be to everyday have to put so much energy in denying a part of who you are. No one should have to do that.”

“I was skeptical about the level of impact an exercise like this could truly make in just one and a half hours. But I walked away with a commitment to the work of racial and social justice, especially learning my own roadblocks and hearing ideas for additional action steps moving forward.”

On-going, honest and open conversation on these issues is critical to true enduring transformational change. Thus, NORDP will be hosting these Conversation Roadblock sessions each quarter for the next year. And, because such discussion is just the beginning of our journey to justice, NORDP’s CIE will also be hosting a developmental series for NORDP members on topics like privilege, allyship, intrinsic bias, cross-cultural collaboration, intersectionality, power dynamics, and institutional racism. In addition, keep an eye out for a climate survey on diversity, equity, and inclusion in early 2021. We hope that you’ll participate in these opportunities to make your voice heard, listen to others’ stories, and continue the hard work of dismantling systemic and structural racism and discrimination in our personal and professional spheres of influence.

Reference: Catalyst, Conversation Roadblocks (October 10, 2019) (

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.

2021 NORDP Awards • Due November 4

NORDP has created three new awards to celebrate the outstanding accomplishments of members making exemplary contributions to the organization, the profession, and/or the field. These awards honor the excellence and impact of NORDP members and recognize contributions of NORDP member-leaders, including the practice or production of new knowledge related to activities such as (but not limited to):

  • strategic research advancement,
  • communication of research and research opportunities,
  • enhancement of research collaboration and team science, and
  • proposal development.

NORDP Awards will celebrate the distinctive achievements of individuals, collaborative groups or work teams, programs or projects, and organizations. Winners of NORDP Awards will be recognized during the annual NORDP Research Development Conference.

Nominations for NORDP Awards, including self-nominations, may be submitted by any NORDP member in good standing. Unless otherwise indicated, current members of NORDP’s Board of Directors are ineligible to submit nominations (including self-nominations). Information about prior NORDP Award recipients is available here.

All nominations for NORDP Awards (including the existing Rising Star Award) will be accepted through a new InfoReady NORDP awards portal and nominations will be due the first Wednesday in November, annually. 

See more about award types below, and submit nominations by November 4, 2020.

Questions? Join us October 14, 3:30-4:15 pm EDT for a discussion about new NORDP award opportunities: | Meeting ID: 873 3207 7727

Award Types

Innovation Award

Recognizes individuals, groups, or team; functional units; or organizations who leverage unique skills or resources to kick-start innovation in research development and advance the profession or the field in ways that generate evidence of promise or demonstrable results. Innovations leverage partnerships, experiment with tools and techniques, or generate and share knowledge to advance NORDP and the work of its members.

Eligibility: Regular NORDP members (i.e., non-board members) in good standing are eligible for individual nomination. NORDP members in good standing and current members of NORDP’s Board of Directors may be included as part of nominations for groups, teams, functional units, or organizations.

Leadership Award

This award honors a member, a group of members or a team, a research development unit, or an organization that demonstrates exceptional leadership and/or a deep commitment to volunteerism in ways that advance the profession or field of research development.

Eligibility: Regular NORDP members (i.e., non-board members) in good standing are eligible for individual nomination. NORDP members in good standing and current members of NORDP’s Board of Directors may be included as part of nominations for groups, teams, functional units, or organizations.

NORDP Fellow

Designation as a NORDP Fellows is made to recognize the long-term accomplishments of members who have made sustained contributions to NORDP and worked tirelessly to advance research development as a profession and/or as a field. Status as a NORDP Fellow is the highest professional distinction the organization may bestow on a member. No more than one percent of NORDP members will be named Fellows annually. 

Eligibility: Regular members (i.e., non-board members) in good standing who have maintained an active NORDP membership for at least five consecutive years are eligible for nomination.

Rising Star Award

The Rising Star Award is bestowed on up to three members annually in recognition of outstanding, early volunteer contributions to NORDP and strong potential for future contributions to the organization and the profession or the field. Rising Star recipients receive waived registration for a subsequent NORDP annual conference. 

Eligibility: Regular members (i.e., non-board members) in good standing who have maintained an active NORDP membership for fewer than five consecutive years are eligible for nomination. Current and past board members are ineligible for this award.

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.

Celebrate Good Times… Mentor On!

By Kathy Partlow

As a new and unprecedented academic year begins, the Mentoring Committee took a moment to celebrate accomplishments of the past year and brainstorm new opportunities for the coming year. Committee members submitted words associated with participating on the Committee – like fun, support, dynamic, inclusive, community, and productive –to generate a word cloud. The accomplishments in the past year initiated momentum for mentoring opportunities available to NORDP members in the coming year.

Mentor-Mentee Pairs: The Committee continues to develop and evaluate resources to support mentoring relationships (see the Roadmap and Reflection Resource) for the growing number of matched pairs in the annual NORDP Mentoring Program. This work enabled NORDP to join the national conversation on mentoring at the Mentoring Institute’s annual conference and in The Chronicle of Mentoring & Coaching (see full publication here). In the end of year survey for the 2019-2020 Mentoring Program, 96% of participants would recommend the program to a colleague and 72% plan to continue the mentoring relationship beyond the formal program year. This year, separate cohort meetings (McHuddles) will be available for mentees and mentors to allow each group to interact and learn from each other.

Peer Mentoring Groups: New Peer Mentoring Groups (PMGs) are benefiting from last year’s pilot program and new supporting resources. PMGs allow members with similar interests to share resources, provide feedback, and act as accountability partners for building skills in leadership, proposal development, collaboration, career development, communication, and strategic planning. The invitation remains open to join and meeting times are posted on NORDP’s event calendar. Additionally, the PMG framework is supporting the exciting new NORDP LEAD (Leadership, Engagement and Development) opportunity.

Mentor Training: The RD-adapted mentor training developed from the evidence-based curriculum available from the National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) and Center for the Improvement of Mentored Experiences in Research (CIMER) was beta-tested in a virtual format this summer. This opportunity for mentor training will be broadly available to NORDP members in 2021. You can indicate your interest for participating in mentor training here.

Additional highlights, benefits of mentoring relationships, and experiences of supporting mentoring at our home institutions will be shared in the second iteration of the well-received Mentoring Lightning Storm. Join us for a fun-filled, fast-paced, and mentoring-focused series of lightning talks on October 23 at 2 p.m. Eastern!

Have other thoughts or ideas you’d like to share with the Mentoring Committee? Feel free to leave a comment or email us at

Final Sessions of NORDP2020

All great things come to end, including NORDP2020. This month NORDP will host the final three NORDP2020 sessions on certifications/credentialing, peer review design and strategy, and mentoring. You can check out the programs and register to attend HERE. Details on each session are below.

Already, some members have been asking “what happens next after NORDP2020 ends?” That’s easy to answer! Once the final “live” session concludes, all the NORDP2020 content (videos, slides, transcripts, etc.) will be placed in one huge NORDP2020 conference package and made available to all members free of charge through NORDP’s LMS. So, if you missed a live session or two, no worries; everything will be available for viewing at your leisure by the end of October.

October 6, 1pm ET: NORDP2020: Research Development and Alphabet Soup – Making Sense of Certification and Credentialing in an Evolving Environment

We know there is no concise, satisfying, and all-inclusive definition for research development and as our community evolves, we now reflect a wide range of experiences. Indeed, qualifications and experiences of RD professionals vary significantly depending on our institution’s priorities and expectations. This means we often engage across a spectrum of activities, including research administration, communication facilitation and networking, project management, writing and editing, curriculum instruction and design, graphic design, and other niche work that compliments our terminal degrees. Examples may include, but may not be limited to: technical writing certificate; grant writing certificate, certified research administrator (CRA), editor of life sciences (ELS); proposal management (CF.APMP); and project management (PMI).

The goal of this session is to introduce some of the common certifications and credentials that RD professionals currently hold and explore the return on investment for earning them. Learning outcomes include a deeper appreciation of how augmenting and complementing existing skills with certification may strengthen an RD office, and greater knowledge of professional education resources (with or without certification and/or credentialing) that can contribute to increased productivity individually and within an RD office.

This session is relevant for emerging and established RD professionals looking for career development oppportunities, and for supervisors defining RD roles and hiring/managing RD professionals. Attendees should consider themselves advanced in their knowledge of RD responsibilities.

October 21, 2pm ET: NORDP2020: Peer Review Design and Strategy

For over 20 years the AAAS Research Competitiveness Program (RCP) has worked with State, Federal, international, and non-profit organizations in designing and implementing peer review systems for sceince and technology grant programs. The goal of the AAAS RCP-led roundtable is to share the program’s expertise in this realm, while stimulating peer-to-peer discussion on common challenges and strategic approaches to peer review.

Participants will exchange their experiences with and approaches to proposal peer review to gain insight on effective strategies to idenitfy and support the highest quality research, mitigate risk, streamline review and decision-making processes, and develop an insitutional culture of rigorous evalauation. The advantages and disadvantages of different peer review modeles and variables will be discussed including: revew panel structure; review criteria; and solicitation design. Through the topical roundtable participants will gain a better understanding of how other organizations manage peer review processes and present an opportunity for them to improve their own systems.

This session builds on a previous panel-based presentation from AAAS RCP at the 2018 SSTI conference, which focused on RCP’s work with state organizations to align review processes with the needs and priorities of the initiative and funding mechanism. The roundtable format presents an opportunity to to expand this discussion beyond state-based initiatives to other domestic organizations engageing in proposal review.

October 23, 2pm ET: NORDP2020: Mentoring Lightning Storm

This mentoring-focused series of talks will engage NORDP’s current and prospective mentors and mentees with topics geared toward foundational mentoring skills and experiences. Sessions will showcase best practices necessary to be successful in mentoring relations, as well as, provide insights into the program in a brief but interactive format. The talks will provide potential mentors and mentees additional resources to support NORDP or other future mentoring relationships. 

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.

Introducing NORDP’s New PEERD Experts

NORDP’s Program for External Evaluation of Research Development (PEERD) is proud to announce a new cadre of PEERD Experts who will serve from October 1, 2020 through September 30, 2023. PEERD Experts provide an array of services to client organizations interested in valuable benchmarking tools, best practices, and guidance to enhance research development program activities and further the research enterprise at their institutions. In addition to its formal review program, PEERD will be offering virtual consultations, competitive analyses, as well as presentations and workshops. Learn more about PEERD here.

PEERD Experts, 2020-2023:

Jamie Burns

Jamie Burns is a Senior Research Analyst on the Competitive Intelligence (CI) team within Research Development at Arizona State University (ASU). In this role, she’s increased the diversity, capacity, and sophistication of the CI work at the university level. This work has contributed to improving strategic and actionable insights to assess institutional performance, defining and refining the competitive landscape in key areas, and growing research dollars via proposals to federal sponsors. Her CI work includes analysis and visualization of both internal and external data, comparison to competitor institutions, insights gained from human intelligence, and forward-looking recommendations with actionable insights and plans for implementation.

Camille Coley

As a Vice President for Government Relations at the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH), Ms. Coley is responsible for overseeing the federal grants portfolio, international relations, and institution-wide strategic planning. She is actively involved with AMNH’s education programs and the broader impacts of the Museums scientist, as her primary goal is to grow the research enterprise and expand opportunities for large proposals. Before working at the Museum, she was the Associate Vice President for Research at Florida Atlantic University (FAU). During her tenure at FAU, she helped the Division of Research operationalize as a unit with functions from pre-award through post-award to commercialization. She was engaged in the University community as a member of the strategic planning committee and a co-chair of a University task force on meeting community needs and unique institutional responsibilities.

Karen Eck

Karen Eck, PhD, is Assistant Vice President for Research at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia. She interfaces with internal and external entities in support of research development and policy, research strategic planning and partnerships, and regional and other initiatives on behalf of the Office of Research. Dr. Eck has developed and presented faculty/stakeholder workshops on a myriad of topics including team science, the peer review process, foundation funding, and grant writing for DoD, NSF, NIH, the humanities, and large team grants. She has led successful large-scale initiatives, such as a $120.5 million HUD grant awarded to the City of Norfolk and Commonwealth of Virginia in 2016. Dr. Eck has contributed to four broad strategic planning processes: ODU University Strategic Planning Committee 2014-2019 & 2020-2025, ODU University Libraries Strategic Planning in 2014, and developing the first 5-year ODU Research Strategic Plan in 2015.

Sharon Franks

Sharon Franks, PhD is the Senior Director of the Research Proposal Development Service at the University of California San Diego, where she has worked since 1993. Dr. Franks also serves on the management teams of two large UC San Diego-led centers: an NSF Materials Science Research and Engineering Center and a DOE Energy Frontier Research Center. She has contributed to more than 300 proposals to public and private sponsors for which budgets totaled more than $2 billion, and to the success of proposals that have generated more than $700 million in extramural funding. Competitive intelligence, proposal development, and support for early- and mid-career investigators all feature prominently in Sharon’s current portfolio. Dr. Franks has served as a proposal reviewer and panelist for multiple NSF programs, and she is lead author of Education and Public Outreach: A Guide for Scientists, published by The Oceanography Society.

Alicia Knoedler

Across a 20-year career in research leadership and research development, Dr. Alicia J. Knoedler supports and encourages researchers to lead paths of growth and expansion of their research programs, diversify research perspectives, and seek new research directions and partnerships. Dr. Knoedler specializes in crafting, leading and implementing initiatives of strategic value to research across all disciplines and a diverse range of research organizations. She has worked with institutions to identify research areas as strategic priorities, design measures and metrics aligned with research performance and growth, and understand capacity and competitiveness for expanding and diversifying research and support for the research enterprise. Dr. Knoedler is a national leader in developing university-based research enterprises and talent. She has had substantial success in helping individuals craft career-long scholarship trajectories, has a strong record of supporting underserved disciplines like the arts and humanities, and has led efforts to diversify research leadership nationally. She currently serves as the Vice President for Research and Innovation at Miami University.

Jacob Levin

Jacob E. Levin, PhD is Director of Research Development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Dr. Levin is also Founder and Principal of LGG Research Strategy & Funding Services, a boutique consultancy that has worked directly with researchers and University leadership at more than three dozen institutions worldwide. Previously, he was Associate Vice Chancellor for Research at the University of California, Irvine, where he led a 10-member Research Development Office. Jacob is a AAAS Fellow, MIT startup founder, Founding Board Member and Past President of NORDP. He has helped secure over $1 Billion in research, training and infrastructure funding, and has spearheaded the establishment of successful research collaborations spanning all 7 continents.

Michael Spires

Mr. Spires is an academically well‐rounded scholar, a published author and seasoned presenter, and an experienced reviewer. He has been working in research development full‐time for nearly 14 years, mentored by one of the thought leaders in the field. He has done extensive service to the profession, including multiple leadership positions within NORDP. He has been a mentor, both formally and informally, to a number of research development professionals in his career. Oakland University is the fourth institution where he has either established or helped to establish an RD function where none existed before: two emerging research institutions in different states, an R1 in a third state, and a major non‐profit research institution.

Peggy Sundermeyer

Dr. Peggy Sundermeyer joined Trinity University in 2014 as the Director of Sponsored Research in the Office of Academic Affairs. Prior to relocating to Trinity University, Peggy worked at the University of Minnesota, holding a number of positions in the Office of the Vice President for Research. In 2004 she was asked by the VPR to establish an office of research development, the first of its kind at the UMN and one of the earliest in the United States. The Office of Research Advancement created multiple internal award programs, supported large interdisciplinary applications, and worked closely with Deans who shortly established their own collegiate RD operations with similar goals.

Jessica Venable

Drawing on more than 20 years of experience in sponsored research, research development, and project management, Dr. Venable provides clients with strategic advice and support to develop relationships, build capacity, identify appropriate funding opportunities, and apply for funding from federal and private grantmakers. She specializes in funding opportunities for the STEM fields, particularly as they pertain to underserved and underrepresented individuals, institutions, and groups. She has served as Executive Director, Research Universities and Institutions Practice, McAllister & Quinn since 2016 where she assists clients with highest research activity to secure federal funding. Additionally, she has held research positions at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Barbara Walker

As Director of Research Development for Social Sciences, Humanities, Fine Arts, and Education at University of California-Santa Barbara, Dr. Endemaño Walker is responsible for catalyzing research innovation and excellence through professional development and mentoring activities with faculty members, along with strategic planning for large interdisciplinary research programs and the broader campus research enterprise. Her other areas of expertise are team science, collective intelligence, and inclusive excellence. Dr. Endemaño Walker is co-author of the book, Funding Your Research in the Humanities and Social Sciences: A Practical Guide to Grant and Fellowship Proposals. She also advises campus leadership on diversity and inclusion initiatives as the Special Assistant to the Executive Vice Chancellor/Provost.

Quyen Wickham

Mr. Wickham has over 10 years of experience in research development (RD) from two nationally ranked high research universities working at the both central and center level. During this time, he has had the opportunity to develop an understanding of proposal writing, project evaluation, project management, and proposal management. His experience in higher education administration, team science facilitation, and faculty-focused strategy sessions has resulted in a deep appreciation for how research is accomplished by research development professionals. He has applied his training in USAID and the Shipley Associates proposal development process to effectively managing $150 million in full proposals, netting over $35 million in awards in his first 15 months at Arizona State University. He continues to lead presentations on high value solicitations, manage multiple color team reviews to strengthen proposals, and is a regular presenter at university-wide RD professional development trainings.

Impact of Social Sciences and Humanities 2020

The Network for Advancing and Evaluating the Societal Impact of Science (AESIS Network) invites research managers, science policy makers, funders, knowledge exchange experts and other relevant professionals from all parts of the world together to engage with one another on an advanced online conference platform. The Impact of Social Sciences and Humanities conference will be held October 14-16, 2020.

AESIS is offering NORDP members a registration discount to attend. See flyer and draft program attached.

Entering Mentoring Interactive Webinar Series: A Successful Beta Test

By Samarpita Sengupta

A year ago, when I was thinking of applying for the NORDP mentoring program as a mentee, I was encouraged to apply as a mentor too. I remember the paralyzing terror I felt thinking “what do I know about mentoring someone else” and “how am I even qualified.”

For some people, like the extraordinary members of the NORDP Mentoring Committee, mentoring comes easily, but for others, it is a learned skill. The Center for Improvement of Mentored Experiences in Research (CIMER) and the National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) were established to fill in the gap; to educate researchers of all stages on mentoring; to create best practices; and to establish a mentoring culture within academia.

NRMN established curriculums to offer mentor training, mentee training and facilitator training. These courses are now offered through CIMER. NORDP members and pioneers, Jan Abramson and Etta Ward went through the Facilitator training offered by NRMN and CIMER. They immediately saw the potential and began hatching plans for providing mentor training to the NORDP community. As luck may have it, they met Paula Carney, who had gone through the Facilitator training and the NORDP mentor training subcommittee was formed. Subsequently, other members of the group, Kathryn Partlow, Erica Severan went through the training;team member Kristen Boman has worked with the NRMN Mentor Training program since its inception. The subcommittee has recently recruited Tabitha Finch, a new NORDP member, and a trained facilitator.

Over the past year, the Mentor Training subcommittee of the NORDP Mentoring Committee has been hard at work adapting the Entering Mentoring training curriculum for RD professionals. They created case studies, didactics and a workshop to be delivered at the NORDP Annual Conference. And then the pandemic hit!

When the conference was canceled, the team quickly pivoted to a Zoom-based delivery format. After hours of discussions on how to best deliver the trainings, duration of each session and how to preserve the most interactive portions of an in-person workshop, namely, the conversations around mentoring case studies and sharing of personal, sometimes vulnerable, experiences; the team put together the 8-part Mentor Training Session that was tested among a small cohort of NORDP members this past summer.

The sessions were spread out over 8 weeks with one hour each session, followed by a Room in the Zoom where the presenters hung around to keep conversations going and answer questions. The topics covered included:

  1. Introduction
  2. Maintaining Effective Communication
  3. Aligning expectations
  4. Assessing Understanding
  5. Addressing Equity and Inclusion
  6. Fostering Independence
  7. Promoting Professional Development
  8. Articulating Your Mentoring Philosophy

The sessions were well attended and almost all of the people who started the 8 week session were present at the final session. There were rave reviews about the virtual format and its ease of use, the use of breakout rooms to facilitate conversations and provide networking opportunities, zoom polls and word clouds to drive the points home and overall knowledge gained by the trainees. Most people thought very highly of the presenters and found the program met its learning objectives and that the information they gained was going to be useful for them. Open ended questions yielded excited responses from the attendees: “EXCELLENT and very well-done!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I know a TON of work went into the adaptation of this material, and it showed.”

While most of the feedback was positive, most attendees felt that the time devoted to the sessions was not adequate. One-hour sessions were not enough time to get into deep conversations about the topics being covered.

The Mentor Training team has taken the feedback into consideration and they are now working on innovative solutions to the problem of less time while being cognizant of the limitations of virtual platforms and the associated attention spans. A NORDP Circle has been created so that the beta tester attendees can maintain the sense of belonging to a cohort.

As someone who was once terrified of being a mentor, being a part of the subcommittee and attending these sessions has helped me come a long way. I now know what my mentoring philosophy looks like and I know what my strengths and weaknesses as a mentor and by extrapolation, a mentee are. I feel better prepared for any future mentoring relationships, especially those with people who are different than me. I not only feel that I have grown as a mentor, but the session on addressing equity and inclusion have helped me grow as a compassionate human aware of my biases that I can extend to all my relationships.  

NORDP mentoring committee plans to offer future sessions of the Mentor Training Workshops soon. Furthermore, there are additional exciting opportunities in the pipeline! If you are interested in joining the Mentoring Committee or the Mentor Training team, please email

Stay tuned to this space for more soon!

NORDP-NE Regional Summer (Virtual) Roadtrip to UMaine

Submitted by NORDP NE Communications Coordinator, Bethany Drews Javidi, University of Connecticut

On Wednesday, September 16, over 40 RD professionals from New England went on a virtual road trip to UMaine for the second of two summer NORDP-NE regional meetings. Special thanks to host Jason Charland, Director of the Office of Research Development at UMaine, and to UMaine President Joan Ferrini-Mundy, who was the guest speaker. Pres. Ferrini-Mundy spoke on “Opportunities and Considerations for Regional Research Development Collaborations” and fielded questions from the participants about how regional institutions can build effective research partnerships. The discussion was informed by Pres. Ferrini-Mundy’s experience as NSF’s Chief Operating Officer and head of the Directorate for Education and Human Resources.

Many thanks to the other contributors to the meeting: Mark Milutinovich, Director, Large Center Development, University of New Hampshire, shared UNH’s plans to host DoE national lab events in the Northeast–plans that have been reconfigured–but not derailed!–in light of the covid-19 pandemic. Anne Maglia, Member, NORDP Board of Directors and Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Administration and Integrity, UMass Lowell, got the group up to speed on events at NORDP national. Amy Gantt served as facilitator of the Q&A with Pres. Ferrini-Mundy and discussed the region’s work on building a resource listing institutional research strengths and infrastructure to facilitate inter-institutional collaboration.

An informal networking session concluded the meeting, where members throughout the region connected and shared their experiences in RD.

The NORDP-NE group wished friend, RD advocate, and mentor Kathy Cataneo well in her upcoming retirement. We are all indebted to Kathy for her leadership in establishing NORDP-NE and laying the groundwork for the professionalization of RD nationally.

NORDP-NE is also grateful to the dedication of its Chair, Jeralyn Haraldsen of UVT, for her leadership and efforts in bringing the meeting to fruition and for hosting the region’s first summer (vitrual) roadtrip to the University of Vermont in July.

NORDP LEAD Kickoff September 29

Wondering how to make the most of your NORDP membership? Interested in enhancing your leadership capacity and professional network? Curious about what it takes to land an advanced role in research development?

If so, join the kickoff conversation to learn about NORDP Leadership, Engagement and Development (NORDP LEAD) scheduled for 2 p.m. EDT/10 a.m. PDT on Tuesday, September 29.

NORDP LEAD is being established to help create pathways for member engagement, service and leadership across all levels of NORDP and the research development profession. The program is intentionally designed for all NORDP members to participate. 

The program will launch with the Sept. 29 kickoff conversation. Following a program overview, a moderated panel featuring four NORDP members will discuss the opportunities for and personal benefits of committee service and leadership, board of directors service and institutional leadership. Panelists include:

  • Jeff Agnoli, Ohio State University
  • Vanity Campbell, University of California
  • Kimberly Eck, Emory University
  • Samarpita Sengupta, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center

There also will be an opportunity for participants to network and engage with colleagues in Zoom breakout rooms. Join in the conversation, make new connections and gain additional information or perspective. Please click here to register for the NORDP LEAD kickoff.

Beyond the initial discussion on Sept. 29, NORDP LEAD will engage and support participants using the peer mentor group (PMG) model. PMGs connect NORDP members at many levels of professional development to share resources, provide feedback and act as accountability partners in skill building and professional development related to increasing engagement, service and leadership potential.

Please contact with questions.