It is SO crazy to realize that summer will be coming to an end in a month or so. That’s a cliché, I know it. But it’s true! I haven’t made it to the beach yet this summer… Now that the water is warmer and as soon as school is back in session I’m looking forward to going.
Second Stage redux: I loved the education part of the education and finance work. It was creative work, designing workshops, learning how to teach as I went along. It was great to be communicating things that helped people do their jobs better. The finance side of things was tougher for me. It was more routine… and a lot of bugging people to do things that they hadn’t done. Not my Forte. However, after a couple of years I was able to be a part of a working group that explored how to better support research faculty. Focus groups, interviews, and intuition allowed us to come up with a few suggestions that everyone could agree to.
- Separate research administration duties from clerical duties where possible
- Have research administrators report to other administrators
- Create more research administration positions
- Create a comprehensive research administration education program
Because of #4, a new position was created—Director of Education and Outreach (DEO)– and I got the job. : ) It was my dream job—the job I’d wanted since I before I became a departmental grants manager. I designed, coordinated and taught workshops. I worked with people from across the university and within my college to create meaningful formal courses and helpful informational sessions. Most of all, I facilitated connections between people and groups so that the system worked better. I guess you could say I helped grease the machinery. Whatever it was, I was able to make a difference to the working lives of research administrators.
I’m feeling like I’m being too boring here… talking about myself too much. But, as Rachel says, we all have unique stories to tell. And they are all Worthy.