by Dave Reed, email@example.comThe American Statistical Association has worked with NIH and NSF to encourage statisticians to participate in the panel review process. The first link below is a Google Form for nominations to be on NIH panels. The second link is to an NSF page where people can volunteer for panels, and the third is a link to a general document that describes the process, how to get involved, and things to consider when reviewing a proposal. The first is specific to statisticians, but the second two are general and are suitable for all disciplines.
NSF – volunteer for panels
Serving effectively on funding review panels: advice for statisticians new to the process
by Amy L. Howard, Center for Diversity & Inclusion
What does diversity mean and why does it matter?
Join us at noon Monday, February 12, 2018 in MUB Ballroom B1 for our first Diverse Dialogues to engage in meaningful campus dialogue around topics of diversity and inclusion. Bring your own lunch, light refreshments and beverages will be provided.
This guided conversation will allow individuals to discuss the meaning of diversity and explore the multiple diversities that exist. Individuals will work to identify the relevance of their own cultural and social identities and leave with an enhanced understanding of how to embrace diversity in order to work more effectively across difference at Tech and within their respective communities.
The Diverse Dialogues series aims to provide opportunities for students, faculty and staff to have conversations about relevant issues of equity, diversity, inclusion, social justice and much more. They are designed to be an informal, yet guided gathering to allow participants to educate and learn from one another. While each dialogue in the series has a centralized theme, we want to encourage participants to determine where the conversations go. This series is meant to start the discussion on difficult topics and implore individuals to push their awareness, knowledge and action related to themes of diversity and inclusion.
Tom Freeman from The William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) will offer the three-part Canvas Introductory Workshop series for instructors and instructional staff looking to get started using the Canvas Learning Management System. The series begins January 9, 2018 The three workshops in the series are:
- Canvas 101: Introduction to Canvas
- Pages & Modules in Canvas
- Assignments & Grades in Canvas
The series gives instructors and others who will be building and administering Canvas courses the basic information necessary to create a basic Canvas course. Each workshop is conducted in a 50-minute block between five minutes after and five minutes before the hour, and offers attendees an opportunity to work hands-on in Canvas during the workshop. Participants are encouraged to take Canvas 101 first, and then take the next two workshops as they fit your schedule after.
Those interested in attending can find out more and register on the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning. For more general information or help with Canvas at Michigan Tech, be sure to visit Canvas One Stop.
Submitted by: Natasha Chopp
The VPR office has released a request for proposals for the Research Excellence Fund, Portage Health Foundation Mid-Career, and Faculty Fellow Program. Please share this information those interested in pursuing any of these opportunities.
Research Excellence Fund Proposals
Guest author: Peter Larsen
Happy post-Thanksgiving to the ECM faculty and team members!
As you think about your upcoming plans for research — and how to fund it! — now might be a great time to explore the Research Centers and Institutes at Michigan Tech.
Michigan Tech’s Research Centers and Institutes exist to promote interdisciplinary work across campus. Michigan Tech is home to 21 Centers and Institutes. This post is designed to provide answers to some common questions and information about how to engage with these campus resources.
What is the difference between a Center and an Institute?
A Center is a collaborative effort of faculty/researchers from two or more departments focused on a particular theme of research or educational activity. An Institute is proposed for larger initiatives that involve collaboration across multiple Colleges/Schools. Institutes may also contain one or more research centers within their organizational structure.
How are Centers and Institutes formed?
Centers and Institutes typically arise out of the interdisciplinary work of researchers. Approval requires evidence that there is a group of interdisciplinary researchers working together that could benefit from a Center/Institute structure. The second general factor in the decision to develop a Center or Institute is the existence of a funding opportunity that would benefit from the existence of the research center. Centers are proposed by faculty through an established process. Department chairs and deans from all involved administrative units must approve the plan, with final approval granted by the Vice President for Research, Provost, and University President.
How do I join a Center or Institute? What are the benefits of that affiliation?
Faculty can affiliate with one or more Centers/Institutes by simply expressing an interest. Only one Center can be the “home” to a sponsored project, but researchers with multiple research thrusts can affiliate with more than one Center or Institute.
Centers and Institutes provide an intellectually stimulating environment for researchers working across disciplines and on large projects. Centers/Institute funds are used to further the interdisciplinary mission of the group. Funds are used for a variety of purposes, for example to support student travel, provide cost share on research projects, or fund shared equipment or personnel. Centers also offer services like administrative support, access to equipment/facilities, and shared information about upcoming proposal deadlines. In addition, Centers/Institutes often organize professional and social opportunities for Center members, students, post-docs, and research staff. Once you become a member of a Center, you can suggest opportunities and events that are beneficial to the group.
How are Centers and Institutes funded?
Centers are funded through the scholarly work of affiliated researchers. 18% of Institutional Research and Development (IRAD) funds collected from externally funded projects submitted through a Center or Institute are returned for use by the Center or Institute. These funds are in addition to the IRAD returned to the PI and administrative units (department and college/school); in other words, no one receives less IRAD if a Center or Institute is involved. The Center orInstitute is accountable to the Vice President for Research to show that IRAD funds are being effectively leveraged to expand the interdisciplinary work of the center.
How are Centers and Institutes administered?
Centers and Institutes are governed by the structure proposed and approved during the creation of the center. Most Centers or Institutes could be called “academic” or “virtual” centers in that the researchers and director are employed by academic departments, rather than directly by the Center. These Centers are proposed and led by a director who is a tenured or tenure-track faculty member.
A small number of Centers/Institutes affiliated with Michigan Tech operate uniquely. These Centers/Institutes are their own organizational unit (operating outside of an academic department, college, or school) and typically have a full-time director, multiple full-time staff members to support and conduct research, and often have Center-owned facilities and equipment. The Keweenaw Research Center, the Michigan Tech Research Institute, and the Great Lakes Research Center are examples of this alternate Center/Institute structure. Other Centers are similar to these in some ways with a full-time director and staff (e.g., Center for Technology and Training) and/or their own facilities (e.g., Advanced Power Systems Research Center).
Centers are authorized for a specific period of time (usually five years). Annual reports are required, and a self-study is required at the end of the initial authorization period to determine effectiveness and to provide a justification for Center renewal (if desired).
How can I learn more?
Contact information for current Center and Institute directors can be found here
Center and Institute functions and opportunities will be a topic of discussion during the annual Research Development Day that will be held January 11, 2018. Center and Institute directors will be invited to attend the social at the end of the day to interact with and discuss collaboration with interested faculty.
In addition, we are planning a Spring 2018 TechTalks on March 21 that will provide highlights of each of the Centers and Institutes in a brief, 2-minute presentation format, followed by a social time to discuss and learn more. Watch your email and Tech Today for additional information.
VPR Campus Satellite Office Pilot
Sponsored Programs Office (SPO) Spotlight
To provide each of you with direct and convenient access to proposal support, the Vice President for Research (VPR) set up a satellite office on campus. The majority of the VPR staff are located in the Lakeshore Center in downtown Houghton which means our interactions with you have been predominantly through email. However, to support faculty and staff face-to-face, in areas related to sponsored programs, we located this office on the 6th floor of the Dow Environmental Sciences & Engineering Building. My name is Jennifer Bukovich and my role in SPO is to help with multiple aspects of your proposal preparation.
I’m located in room 616 and I am eager to assist the faculty and staff in many areas related to proposal submission and award administration including but not limited to:
- Interpretation of agency guidelines.
- Prepare and/or provide guidance related to your budget, transmittal sheet and cost share form.
- Interpretation of the grant/contract terms and conditions.
- Provide guidance for post-award activities including no-cost time extensions, budget modifications, etc.
If you are working on your first proposal, we can start by talking about the resources you will need to complete your proposal. I can guide and help you develop a budget that meets your agency format. Michigan Tech requires an internal transmittal sheet to help all of the units supporting your research know their responsibilities and commitments. I can help you complete this important document as it summarizes your project and includes all required University approvals.
The VPR Office and I are extremely excited about this opportunity to be located on campus. I look forward to the personal interaction this location will provide. For assistance, please stop by my office, room 616 of the DOW building.
Dear ECM-ers from 2015-present,
I wanted to share with you how significant this is. For the last 6 years, departments and programs have been completing their assessments which culminated in a report submitted to ABET this last summer for their review. Their questions during their visit this week largely originated from those reports. Enterprise was of course emphasized everywhere in the report, but the Early Career Management Committees would not have been. Thus, it was the mention of this program during the opening session on Monday at 8 am and discussions with all of you that reinforced in the ABET evaluators minds what an asset this program has been.
Guest author: Heather Deering
“Language, identity, place, home: these are all of a piece—just different elements of belonging and not-belonging.” ~Jhumpa Lahiri
Moving to a new place can bring many challenges. The English Language Institute (ELI) at Michigan Tech helps international faculty and their families feel at home through a variety of language services the ELI offers.
Tea Time is a free weekly event that runs all year round. Each week students, faculty, and community members meet to practice conversation and share stories. Some of the themes we have discussed have been bucket lists, natural hazards, politics, war dances, and dowries. Come join us at the ELI office (DHH G044) from 2:30-4:30 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Customized tutoring is available for Michigan Tech international students and faculty. We also welcome community members interested in developing their English language skills. Tutors are our professionally trained IESL instructors, who will conduct a needs assessment and work with you to develop an individualized tutoring program that is suitable for you.
Cost: $25 (faculty)
$15 (family members and graduate students)
Tailored to any student just beginning to learn English, Foundational English courses focus on the different skill areas of listening, speaking, writing, and reading. Students can select how many classes they wish to take in this program. These courses are offered six weeks every semester and in the summer.
Cost: $360 per course
$1,440 for all four courses
Night Owls meets two hours per week for seven weeks every Fall and Spring semester. It covers survival English needed in everyday life in Houghton. This semester, the class starts on Thursday, October 19. At the end of the class this fall, students will be invited to a Thanksgiving celebration. This group is led by community teachers and is made possible with support from the Office of the Provost.
Cost: $25.00 for seven weeks
To register for any of these services (other than Tea Time), visit this link.
If you have any questions or would like more information on other community services, please contact Heather Deering, the ELI Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (906) 487-2009 or visit the English Language Institute website.
I hope your September and the first few weeks of classes have been going well. A key ECM goal this year is to provide regular blog posts that provide information to supplement and support your monthly committee meetings. This month I’d like to delve into managing ego, managing expectations, and time management since all are central to our own productivity, perceptions of accomplishment, and job satisfaction. Setting up good habits and attitudes in these areas help ensure that as you build your group’s own enterprise for tenure and promotion that it doesn’t consume every waking moment of your time and thus compromise a healthy work/life balance.
Managing your own ego can be the first step in seeking out resources and perspectives. It’s the age-old joke about asking for directions and whether that is faster/less stressful than figuring it out yourself. However, I think there is a difference between asking for help and asking for perspectives. Each of you are in the driver’s seat of your career. It can be hard to ask for help because it can feel like you are giving up the wheel. However, asking for perspective means you never give up the wheel, but gain knowledge of the road that you can’t see right in front of your vehicle. Not everyone sees the same road, but collectively multiple people have seen most of the road and its obstacles. The road is ever changing, so staying solidly in the driver’s seat is important. I view ECMs as a highly valuable tool to gain perspective; so consult your ego, but don’t let it keep you from seeking perspectives.
Managing expectations – your own expectations and others – are frequently established as an afterthought or in a manner that isn’t transparently ‘owned.’ Expectations can end up hidden behind TODO lists, assignments, and other obligations. However, the simple act of talking through what all parties expect from an activity/effort can be very beneficial. One strategy is to intentionally separate the long term from the short term expectations. The road to tenure and promotion is a perfect example. Discussions on expectations typically arrive very quickly at, “How many grants/publications/etc. are expected in this department to achieve tenure?” However, this question yields less than satisfying answers for many new professors, “It depends on …” A focus on the short-term first usually helps this discussion greatly. Answers like, “In the first semester, we expect you will establish your group by hiring (or identifying) your first graduate student, setting up your lab/other, giving seminars in other departments, starting to form collaborations, starting to integrate into the department as a citizen invested in our joint future, etc.” Tomorrow’s Professor enewsletter has long been a favorite read (skim?) of mine. A recent post highlighted a book on the “Slow Professor” by Maggie Berg and Barbara K. Seeber whose underlying concept was to embrace deliberate, high impact efforts and resist the chaos from the ‘more, more, more’ messaging. Please consider talking with your ECM about strategies to protect and cultivate time to think creatively and critically, which ultimately increases output quantity and quality.
As you all know from your past experiences, to achieve your goals, managing your time is key. You did well at this in your previous positions or you wouldn’t have been successful and thus recruited and selected for your tenure-track position. However, with your new roles, each of you have likely encountered – or will soon encounter – new time pressures and increases in disparate, unexpected, yet important tasks. These new time pressures typically require adaptations because the game changes with each new stage of our careers. This new game – for which you are prepared – requires some additional skills to thrive and your ECM can provide perspective. Consider asking your committee members what strategies and tricks they use to maximize positive outcomes with greatest efficiency of their time. For example;
- How do you get to know your students on a personal level (beneficial for teaching evaluations) without it consuming all of your available time?
- What strategies improve the quality and timeliness of your own or your TA’s feedback to students in large classes?
- What is the best way to delegate comparison shopping of basic lab supplies to hourly students?
- What strategies help with vetting potential graduate students? Is relying on the standardized scores and application sufficient? (Hint: no)
- How to prioritize and decide what great ideas go to which funding opportunity?
- How to evaluate service requests? Do your committee members have strategies to specialize their service? Their outreach? Are there benefits to that strategy?
Please let me know of any topics you would like to see covered in these blogs. This fall, we plan to cover an introduction to centers and institutes as well as an overview of resources at the Center for Teaching and Learning. Also, the following two blog posts about current opportunities and resources.
Assistant to the Provost for Faculty Development