16th Annual Research Capacity Building Workshop
Written by: Jessica Bloomer
Due to the impact of the Coronavirus, this year’s workshop was completed fully online on March 16, 2020. This unfortunately meant that the second day had to be cancelled as it consisted of group work and in-person interaction. The workshop is an important part of the Pilot Research Project Program to help prepare individuals to write a research proposal and learn about different sources of funding. Luckily, the program was still able to offer the first full day completely online for attendees.
There were thirteen attendees including PhD students and junior faculty from the Air Force Institute of Technology, Murray State University, Ohio University, University of Cincinnati, University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Toledo, and Western Kentucky University. Some of the participants’ fields of study included industrial systems engineering, industrial/organizational psychology, mechanical engineering, occupational health nursing, occupational therapy, and public health.
Dr. Burr Zimmerman a principal consultant from the Urban Venture Group, led the online workshop only slightly modifying the original agenda that was meant to be in-person. Dr. Zimmerman covered six sessions on grant overview and basics, agency perspectives, SBIR/STTR, how to find grant opportunities, what to do before you start writing a proposal, and basics of receiving and executing under an award. Since there was some extra time, Dr. Zimmerman also covered some basics on writing a research proposal.
Dr. Zimmerman’s online workshop was informative and interactive by his use of Mentimeter, which incorporates online polling and quizzes within the presentation. This was a useful tool to help keep attendees engaged in an online format. There were also many tools to use within Zoom, the webinar platform, to check-in with how attendees were feeling about the content such as everyone using thumbs up, thumbs down, yes, no, slow down, and speed up buttons. Dr. Zimmerman made sure to check in often to be sure the attendees were following along and if they had questions.
It was unfortunate that the second day had to be cancelled but the PRP program was still able to offer a meaningful learning experience with online tools to be able to enhance the attendees’ research capacity. Thank you to Dr. Zimmerman for making this a valuable workshop for our attendees!