George Washington University
Research Grants ManagerBecame an RA: The 2010's
I had an opportunity at the university of central Florida to be a temp Proposal Specialist 1 for OSP, I was able to have a permanent position after 6 months where I was a Proposal Specialist 1 full time for 3 years, and then I switched to GWU where I learned the preaward department role perspective of Research Administration. During that time I completed my MRA at UCF and switched to Post Award Departmental for Engineering at GWU where I am a Research Grants Manager.
Research Program ManagerBecame an RA: The 2010's
I started my journey to Research Administration in 2013 working in a department finance position after years of working in banking. I found that I really loved to work with the grants, learn about the research, and learn about the policies involved in the finance management for sponsored research. When I moved back to Washington, DC in 2015, I worked for an academic department at GWU as a finance person, and learned even more about research management, and when given the opportunity, in 2016 I transferred over to a Research Administration position.
It was the first job where I really enjoyed the work I was doing and felt as if I had accomplished something when I would help a PI/Professor successfully submit a proposal, or be selected to receive funding from an agency. I enjoy helping students applying for fellowships the first time around and showing them the complicated side of Research administration, and that it’s not just purchasing and budgets.
I received my CRA Certificate in 2019, and I learned a lot studying for the test and taking it, and it certainly helped me to become a better research administrator. I think Research Admin is a really under rated field in terms of career choice, there’s a lot of upward mobility and so many great chances to learn new things. I’m extremely glad that I found this career and look forward to continuing to learn and grow in the field with each passing year.
Sponsored Projects Analyst - Pre-AwardBecame an RA: The 2000's
In the early 2000’s, I worked in private industry. This was a rather “transitional” time economically, and I became a product of industry layoffs. I joined a temporary service, noting my skills and background in accounting, management, and customer service. I was placed in an Accounting Technician position at a local university, where my department portfolio was all in sponsored research funds. After regaining consciousness from the culture shock between the industry arena and institutes of higher learning, I immediately started learning as much as I could about sponsored research for pre-award and post -award management. I took classes, shadowed other seasoned research administrators, built my resource bank, and joined NCURA. As my skills and confidence levels grew, I moved to other departments (exploring School of Medicine and then other campus departments), and then eventually the central office, as an AOR. 20+ years and 3 Universities later, I still love it! I speak at conferences, provide internal and external trainings, I’m published, and am looking forward to the next adventures around the corner! I literally stumbled into the RA profession, and I’m so glad that I did!!!
Sr. Subcontract AdministratorBecame an RA: The 2000's
I started in Research Administration at the George Washington University in 2007. I had applied for an unrelated position and got offered the job, but declined it. Luckily the hiring folks recognized my potential and brought me back in for a research admin position. I was hired to help with subawards and the rest is history! I’ve worked in university departments, at a central research office, and with multiple funders. It’s been 16 years in the making!
Research Grants ManagerBecame an RA: The 2000's
I became a research administrator at Brown University in 2006 through a temporary employment agency. I had worked in property and casualty insurance for 14-years and was not happy. I loved developing budgets and working with faculty members to develop proposals. I felt like I was making a difference. Due to an adventurous spirit and a series of life changes, I have worked in proposal development at three different prominent institutions. In addition to Brown University in Providence Rhode Island, I worked at The University of California, Berkeley, and for the last 6 1/2 years I have been working at the George Washington University in Washington D.C. I truly love what I do and have a great team of co-workers and faculty investigators.
While working full time, I attained my Master’s of Science Degree in research administration and management online from Emmanuel College in Boston in 2015 and I attained my Certified Research Administrator (CRA) designation in 2018. My current title after a recent promotion is Research Grants Manager. Research administration has truly become a career for me and I will stay in this field until I retire.
Research Program ManagerBecame an RA: The 1990's
1999, the era of shipping paper proposal submissions to NIH and interoffice mail.