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Back Together Again – Looking Towards the Old Normal

By SRAI News posted 12-09-2021 09:25 AM


Back Together Again – Looking Towards the Old Normal

It’s hard to believe it’s been 607 days (1 year, 7 months, 28 days or 19 months, 28 days if you prefer to think of it that way) since phrases such as the “COVID-19 World Pandemic” and “it’s the new ‘normal’”  were introduced into our daily vocabulary. In addition to the shift in our language we had to change how we interact within our workplaces and homes to keep our loved ones, friends, and family safe for these past two years. Wearing masks, six-foot distancing, washing hands, and meeting on Zoom/TEAMS/WebEx or other social platforms have become standard gathering methods. We’ve taught grandparents new technologies in order to see their grandkids, learned that telehealth has become a viable tool to triage health concerns, and met colleagues remotely to conduct business. With all these changes, we call this the “New Normal.” This has led us to wonder whether we are ever going to get back to any of the “Old Normal” where we can meet in-person and look each other in the eyes, hug an old friend, bump fists/elbows, and spend time together in the same room. 

Well, you have an open invitation to get a little of this back at the Northeast/Southern Section meeting in Philadelphia, PA, April 3 – 6, or the Western/Midwest Section meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, April 24 – 27 while listening to colleagues discuss topics of triumph, case studies, and updates related to our industry as research administrators. Both meetings will be great in-person opportunities to conduct water-cooler discussions and either get out for some fresh air and immersion in the rich American history of Philadelphia or the American beauty that Phoenix has to offer. 

As presidents of the Western, Midwest, Northeast, and Southern SRAI Sections, we are actively planning to meet for professional growth and are mindful of the social nurturing we all have been craving and needing. As presidents of our respective Sections, we are developing our Spring meeting programming to bring in dynamic colleagues such as yourselves to speak on various topics and establish social opportunities to engage with old friends and new colleagues. 

In the 2022 meeting for the Western/Midwest Section, we will be offering the Pre-Award and Research Development certificate program, while the Northeast/Southern Section will offer the Financial Management and Pre-Award certificate programs. Both Sections will also offer a wide range of track topics covering:

  • Financial & Post Award Administration
  • Management & Operations
  • Research Ethics & Compliance
  • Sponsors & Agencies
  • Sponsored Programs, Planning, Development, and Deliveries 

We’d love to see you in-person and yes, smiling for photos while wearing a mask brings the ‘Old Normal’ to the ‘New Normal’! 

Your Sections Presidents,

Western Section: Stuart Tenney
Midwest Section: Jason Claes
Northeast Section: Marchon Jackson
Southern Section: Karen Bone