Membership News - What are our New Members Saying about Us?

by Tonya Edvalson on Thursday, August 31, 2017

As a Membership Committee, we are always wondering what our new members are thinking about us. We thought, “Why not ask?” After two successful and well-attended Section meetings in Honolulu and Nashville, we reached out to two of our new members, and here is what they said:

I was a newbie at the SRAI Hawaii Regional Meeting, and as always when I am around other Research Administrators, I enjoy listening, learning and finding people who ‘speak my language.’ Full days of attending workshops and concurrent sessions helped me sharpen some skills and add to my toolbox. I am constantly on the look-out for information I can share with other research administrators and the people I mentor – I was delighted to come away with lots to share. As a new member, I appreciate the relevant posts, emails and sharing with others as a way to stay current in my profession of choice.

Jan Abramson, MS
Sponsored Projects Officer
University of Utah

I found the conference [2017 Southern/Midwest Section Meeting in Nashville] to be a wonderful experience to get a broad introduction into the world of Research Administration and the many facets that can be involved. The wealth of knowledge presented was enlightening, from the sessions that I attended. And Nashville was an excellent location for me, especially since it was my first meeting. I found it very encouraging to have the opportunity to speak with people who didn't necessarily begin with the intent of choosing the Research Administration field and how many began from humble beginnings and have had the opportunities to learn, grow and expand into long successful careers. I hope to continue to learn about Research Administration and SRAI so that I can be one of those individuals with an enduring and expanding path so that I can one day share my career journey that others will find helpful and encouraging themselves.  

Rhonda Beddingfield
Contract Administrator I
The University of Alabama in Huntsville

Upon reading these and hearing from others verbally with similar stories, I find it refreshing to see that the same things are happening at conferences as happened at my first conference in 2009. We have a great organization! We are continuing to be welcoming and networking is a key foundation for making us a success. 

With the 50th anniversary of SRAI coming up and celebrating in Vancouver, I am excited to see all that can make it.  While we are there, please be sure that you reach out to those that you see wearing a “Newcomer” ribbon. All of you that are new, please be sure that you are not afraid to reach out to the "seasoned" members. You will recognize us by the “Ambassador” buttons. We want to make everyone’s experience at the meeting enjoyable, rewarding and to know that we meet your professional goals by providing good education and networking opportunities. 

Tonya K. Edvalson, BS, CCRP
Western Section Chair, Membership Committee
Immediate Past President, Western Section