Note from the Editor | March Contradictions

By SRAI News posted 03-15-2019 00:00


Katie Watkins

Authored by Katie Watkins, M.Ed., Assistant Vice President, Research Admin, University of Akron
Thursday March 7, 2019

March is a month full of contradictions. The celebrations of Fat Tuesday morph into the solemnity of Ash Wednesday. We have the advent of brighter mornings and longer evenings since yesterday when Daylight Savings time kicked in. Then there’s the celebration of Mathematics on International Pi Day, March 14, followed by the bacchanalia of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 (interestingly, falling during Lent this year). The month closes out with International Earth Day on March 20. Sometimes overlooked is that March also happens to be International Women’s Month, with International Women’s Day that we celebrated last week on Friday. The 2019 campaign theme was #BalanceforBetter, described by the organizers as a call-to-action for driving gender balance across the world. One of the campaign’s mottos is that balance is not a women’s issue, but rather a business issue, and it cites the need for “…gender-balanced boardroom(s), a gender-balanced government, gender-balance of employees, more gender-balance in wealth, gender-balanced sports coverage…”

We are fortunate in the field of Research Administration and Management that women in our workplaces are celebrated every day. Our field has done a nearly 360-degree turnaround between 1968 and the present. We know now that the profession has “…transitioned from being populated by men in their thirties with a bachelor’s degree to a profession of women in their fifties with a master’s degree.” (Shambrook, J., Lasrado, V., Roberts, T. & O’Neal, T. (2015, October). 2015 Profile of a Research Administrator. Poster session presented at the SRAI 2015 Annual Meeting, Las Vegas, NV). But while we take this month to celebrate women, let’s not forget all of the dedicated professionals in our field, regardless of gender. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you who toils in our profession day in and day out. We’ll celebrate all of us on National Research Administrator Day, September 25, 2019!

Humor in the Workplace. We want to hear your stories!

Do you have humorous workplace stories to share? In April, the Catalyst will feature stories and anecdotes about workplace shenanigans. After the Northern Hemisphere’s long and cold winter, we could all use a few good laughs! Submit your stories to