The following article was featured on July 15, 2018 on The Chronicle of Higher Education and discusses the benefits of supporting faculty in the NCFDD Faculty Success Program.
Julia Fox was in a rut. After 17 years at Indiana University at Bloomington — including 10 years as a tenured associate professor in the Media School — her scholarship had stalled. She felt overwhelmed by service obligations and family responsibilities and guilty about neglecting her research. So when a unit director there approached her last fall to suggest she enroll in an intensive mentoring program offered by a private consultancy, Fox was “a little leery” about making yet another commitment. But colleagues told her the course had helped them restart their own research, so she decided to give it a try.
The 12-week “faculty success program” was offered by the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity, which provides training and mentoring to grad students, postdocs, and faculty members. The program did take time — it required participants to take part in a 75-minute group call once a week, a five- to 10-minute check-in daily, and an hourlong homework video. But Fox says she “drank the Kool-Aid” from the start, soaking up the tips on time-management and planning. She began scheduling her days and weeks in greater detail and devoting at least 30 minutes a day to her writing.
“It sounds so obvious: Make a plan, write every day,” she says. “But this makes you commit to doing it.”